2018-08-17 19:06:00 CEST
Julia and Chantal dethrone Heather/Brandie, the last undefeated team in Hamburg
The Red Bull Beach Arena embraced Julia Sude and Chantal Laboureur and the Germans answered accordingly, taking down Canadians Heather Bansley and Brandie Wilkerson, the last undefeated team in the FIVB Beach Volleyball World Tour Finals Hamburg 2018 presented by Vodafone.
Julia and Chantal entered the game with one victory and one setback and they knew they had to beat the still undefeated Canadians to remain in contention for a spot in the elimination round. Pushed by thousands of fans, the Germans had a remarkable appearance and prevailed over the Canadians for fourth time in six meetings with a comfortable 21-19, 21-13 victory.
“We felt very comfortable playing in the Center Court in front of our home crowd,” a pleased Julia said after the game. “We did great team work, always supporting one another, and we knew they would be very tough opponents. We had the right strategy, we were strong on side out and we were aggressive in our serving, which that led us to score some easy points.”
It was the second straight victory for Julia and Chantal, who are now second on Pool A and one step closer to the elimination round. The last day of pool play will start with one team qualified, the Canadian, and three contending for the final two spots.
“We knew that in this tournament anyone could beat anyone,” Chantal added. “We knew we could beat them, but at the same time we needed to be really careful because they are really strong. We’re very excited and we’ll put everything in the last game and hopefully we can top our pool.”
The Germans’ last challenge on pool play will be against Brazilians Maria Elisa Antonelli and Carolina Solberg on Saturday. The winner of this match will be guaranteed in the elimination round and will potentially lead the group, earning a direct spot in the semifinals.
“We played them twice, both times in Huntington Beach, and lost both,” Julia recalled. “The first time was very clear and the second was a little closer, so we want to give the next step and beat them this time.”
Already qualified with three victories, Brandie and Heather wait for the conclusion of pool play to know if they’ll advance directly to the semifinals or if they’ll need to play in the quarterfinals.
“It’s not a comfortable place to be because ideally we want to win the pool undisputed and we’ll have to see what happens,” Brandie commented. “It’s just playing sharper. It’s the end of the season so nothing crazy in adjustments. We’ve just got to be at our highest level all the time.”
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