Marta Menegatti and Viktoria Orsi Toth earned a place in the final group phase ©FIVB

Italy's Marta Menegatti and Viktoria Orsi Toth topped their pool at the International Volleyball Federation (FIVB) beach volleyball Olympic qualification event in Haiyang.

The pairing battled to a 24-22, 17-21, 15-11 victory over Poland's Katarzyna Kociolek and Kinga Wojtasik in their opening match of the day in the women's competition.

Menegatti and Toth then enjoyed a comfortable 23-21, 21-19 win over Switzerland's Joana Heidrich and Anouk Vergé-Dépré.

The victories helped the Italians top the Pool F standings.

"We are just glad to be here," Menegatti said, a two-time Olympian.

"Any team can win and we just need to be playing our best."

Menegatti and Toth will feature in tomorrow's final group phase of the Olympic Games qualification event.

The Italians will be joined in a four-team group by Germany's Sandra Ittlinger and Chantal Laboureur, who also won their pool today.

The second group will feature Pool E winners Barbora Hermannova and Marketa Slukova of the Czech Republic, as well as China's Fan Wang and Xinyi Xia.

The runners-up in the pool phase complete the group line-ups.

Eight teams progressed to the final group stage of the men's event ©FIVB
Eight teams progressed to the final group stage of the men's event ©FIVB

In the men's competition, Martins Plavins and Edgars Tocs won both their Pool F matches to top the standings.

Italy's Daniele Lupo and Paolo Nicolai, the Olympic silver medallists at Rio 2016, headed Pool H.

Mirco Gerson and Adrian Heidrich of Switzerland won Pool E, while Brazil's Andre Loyola and George Wanderley triumphed in Pool G.

The pool winners and four runners-up will compete in the final group phase.

Group matches will take place over the next two days, with the top two in each group advancing.

The table-toppers from each group will then play the runner-up in the other group.

The winners of these matches in both the men's and women's competitions will secure spots at Tokyo 2020.