2016-06-12 18:30:00 CEST
Americans defeat the Dutch in fantastic finale
In the final match of a stunning week on the sand at the smart Hamburg Major, Americans Nick Lucena and Phil Dalhausser turned in a superb show to land their first gold in the Swatch Major Series.
After coming so close in last year’s Swatch Beach Volleyball FIVB World Tour Finals, the popular Californians made no mistake this time around to beat Alex Brouwer and Robert Meeuwsen and clinch their fifth gold of the season and an impressive ninth medal in their last 12 tournaments.
The crucial, dramatic turning point in the match came in the closing stages of an epic first set that saw the Americans save four Dutch set-points. With the crowd on their feet for almost 10 minutes as each side traded some sensational and breathtaking points, Dalhausser and Lucena eventually put the set to bed at 29-27.
With a controversial call and those missed set-point opportunities in the first set praying on their minds, Brouwer and Meeuwsen struggled to get on top in the second set with Dalhausser absolutely bossing it at the net. The giant 6ft 9in Olympic Champion of 2008 came up with three trademark monster blocks to put him and Lucena in control and the Americans never looked back to seal a comfortable 21-12 triumph to the delight of the Rothenbaum crowd.
There will be disappointment for the Dutch but the Americans will cherish their first Swatch Major Series success – and who knows what lies in store for the rest of the Tour!