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2016-06-11 12:15:00 CET

Lucena’s love for Center Court

American delight at reaching Rothenbaum last four

Nick Lucena all smiles on Center Court! Photocredit: Stefan Moertl.Nick Lucena all smiles on Center Court! Photocredit: Stefan Moertl.

Only one American men’s team could reach the semifinals – and Nick Lucena and Phil Dalhausser were delighted to beat rivals Casey Patterson and Jake Gibb in what was their first match on Center Court at the smart Major Hamburg.

The 36-year-old pair got the better of their countrymen with a tense 2-0 victory to set-up a Sunday semi against either Alison/Bruno or Ontiveros/Virgen.

“It’s pretty cool!” a happy Lucena told us after the win. “The stadium is amazing, the strings above our head take a bit of adjustment but the atmosphere is great and it was lots of fun.”

The match was also Lucena and Dalhausser’s first using the challenge system and Nick says using this technology can only benefit beach volleyball.

“I like it, referees are only human and they can make mistakes,” he said. “It’s a fantastic idea for the sport, a really smart move.

“Tennis have had it for some years and making the game better is always good.”

As we said, only one of the American powerhouses could reach the semifinals and one team had to lose out.

A disappointed Patterson told us: “We didn’t play well and they played better than us, - that’s all it was. We didn’t capitalize on the opportunities. We’ve finished fifth and not got gold.”

Casey Patterson did not like losing on Center Court. Photocredit: Stefan Moertl. Casey Patterson did not like losing on Center Court. Photocredit: Stefan Moertl.

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