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2018-08-15 21:45:00 CEST

New world number ones deny home victory

Recently lifted to the top of the world ranking, Agatha and Duda took Germans down

Agatha and Duda started their campaign in Hamburg with a victoryAgatha and Duda started their campaign in Hamburg with a victory

Agatha Bednarczuk and Duda Lisboa are playing for the second straight year in the Beach Volleyball FIVB World Tour Finals presented by Vodafone in Hamburg but they enter this year’s edition of the tournament in a different condition as the Brazilians recently reached the top of the world rankings.

Playing together since 2017, the Brazilians achieved the prestigious spot after they won the silver medal in the World Tour four-star event in Moscow last weekend. The goal now is to stay there for much longer.

“When the new world rankings came out we were really happy to see that we were on top,” Duda said. “Of course we know it changes all the time because there are several great teams capable of getting to the top, but I’m proud that we got there. Now we want to keep there and, most importantly, keep playing well.”

The first step for their permanence in the top spot was given in the team’s debut in Hamburg, when the Brazilians, who won silver last year in Hamburg, needed all three sets (19-21, 21-17, 17-15) to prevail over Germany’s Victoria Bieneck and Isabel Schneider.  

“It was a crazy game,” Agatha added. “It’s always hard against them. They are a very strong team and every time we need to come up with a different strategy. They are very solid and the most important thing against them is to be attentive and understand what’s necessary in every game.”

Happiness for the Brazilians, frustration for the Germans, who were backed by thousands of fans in their first-ever World Tour Finals appearance and almost won the third set after being behind 14-11.

“It was amazing,” Schneider commented. “When I entered the stadium and heard all those people cheering for us I was very emotional. I’m really thankful that we have this opportunity to play in the Finals at home. We worked really hard for it. I’m glad we have another chance tomorrow.”

Agatha and Duda will play their second match in Hamburg on Thursday against Canadians Sarah Pavan and Melissa Humana-Paredes. Later, Bieneck and Schneider will try to get their first victory against Czech Republic’s Markéta Sluková and Barbora Hermannová.

20 wins in a row for the @beachvolleyvikings!😱 Watch all of the #HamburgFinals on BeachStream [link in bio 🏐] @andybmol @christiansorum @fijalekbryl @vodafone_de @hamburg_de @redbullgermany

445 Likes, 3 Comments - Beach Volleyball Major Series (@beachmajorseries) on Instagram: "20 wins in a row for the @beachvolleyvikings!😱 Watch all of the #HamburgFinals on BeachStream [link..."

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