2018-08-18 22:22:00 CET
After one and half year of hard work, the Polish are just starting to click
Grzegorz Fijalek had a tough decision to make in the end of 2016. After he played in his second Olympics with Mariusz Prudel, the defender thought it was time to move on and picked up an up-and-coming talent in Michal Bryl. One year and a half later, the 31-year-old Polish is getting some really exciting validation for his decision.
One of the last teams to book its place in the FIVB Beach Volleyball World Tour Finals Hamburg 2018 presented by Vodafone, the Polish duo followed up their finals appearance in the Vienna Major, two weeks ago, with another silver medal at the Rotherbaum.
“I was sure that would be the best decision,” Fijalek told us. “It was time to try out with a different partner and I was lucky to realize so early how big Michal’s potential was. He’s still very young, but he played really well under pressure here in a packed stadium, which is not easy. I’m proud of him. We feel like we’re a big team now.”
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For Bryl, an Under-19 and Under-21 world champion, the opportunity of being polished by one of the most skilled and experienced players in the international scene was just too good to pass. And now, after some time, he feels like the team is.
“I never thought about how far we could go, but Grzegorz has been teaching me a lot and I feel I’m getting better step-by-step,” the 23-year-old blocker commented. “He talks to me all the time about what I should do or what I could change and I try to listen because he knows how to be in the top. With him, I feel we can beat any team in the world.”
Once again, Norwegians Anders Mol and Christian Sørum were between the Polish and the elusive gold medals. Despite of the satisfaction for the strong finish to the season, Fijalek and Bryl seem to have their first goal for the next season already set.
“I think I don’t want to play them anytime soon,” Fijalek joked. “We had our chances in the first set, but we didn’t take advantage of them and it’s not easy to come back when you lose the first set. I hope we can do better the next time we play them, but it was another good step for us here in Hamburg. We need to be happy because we did a great job.”