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2018-08-16 18:22:00 CET

Italians win another thriller

Lupo and Nicolai prevail in their third tie breaker

Lupo scored 23 attack points against the PolishLupo scored 23 attack points against the Polish

Italians Paolo Nicolai and Daniele Lupo have established an interesting standard for their matches in the FIVB Beach Volleyball World Tour Finals Hamburg 2018 presented by Vodafone - they will always lose the first set and the matches will ultimately end in three.

Luckily for the Rio 2016 silver medalists, though, they have come up on top in two of them, including their most recent match, a 16-21, 21-16, 15-13 victory over Poland’s Bartosz Losiak and Piotr Kantor at the Red Bull Beach Arena.

“It’s great that we won, but we definitely need to wake up a little earlier,” the 30-year-old Nicolai said. “We improved our side out and our serving got better. That was the key because the match was close and when they have good receiving they’ll just use all their skills to attack and we kind of controlled it a little bit.”

After an unexpected setback to Germans Julius Thole and Clemens Wickler in the morning, they returned to the sand with the right mindset. The Italians literally gave their blood for the victory as Lupo sustained a minor cut on his nose after being hit by a spike during the game.

“Maybe that’s what made us wake up,” he joked. “We were tough. We’ve been playing really well in this tournament. We lost to the Germans earlier today but they were amazing. We had a better rhythm in this game and did a good job against the Polish.”

With the victory, the Italians remain in contention for a spot in the elimination round. They actually depend only on their own efforts as a victory over Russians Oleg Stoyanovskiy and Igor Velichko on Friday will get them through.

“It’s a different format and we know we need to win this next match,” Nicolai stressed. “But we’ll try not thinking about it and just doing our best.”    

Kantor and Losiak, who also won two of their three matches in Hamburg so far, will complete their pool play schedule against Thole and Wickler.

That's why they call it thinking on your feet 😉 Play back today's #HamburgFinals matches on BeachStream [link in bio] @beachteam_thole_wickler @vodafone_de @hamburg_de

383 Likes, 1 Comments - Beach Volleyball Major Series (@beachmajorseries) on Instagram: "That's why they call it thinking on your feet 😉 Play back today's #HamburgFinals matches on..."

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