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2017-07-31 13:56:00 CET

Dressler/Kunert close to stunning win

The scoreline may not give them credit, but the host team gave the Brazilians a scare

Kunert/Dressler will need to beat Trinidad & Tobago to stay in the tournamentKunert/Dressler will need to beat Trinidad & Tobago to stay in the tournament

They came a few close moments away from upsetting the top-seed Brazilians, so it was little surprise Christoph Dressler and Thomas Kunert were gutted to be so near, yet so far in the FIVB Beach Volleyball World Championships presented by A1.

Red Bull Centre Court fans were delivered an opening-game treat on Monday, as Alvaro Filho and Saymon Barbosa held their nerve to clinch a 21-17, 21-17 win over the home favorites in a game befitting the occasion.

That came after a wonderful first set in which the lead changed hands numerous teams before a run of five straight points paved the way for the tournament favorites to head towards a second win.

The second set was not without its drama too, but with the margins so fine in the world of beach volleyball, the Austrian pair were left with the sinking feeling about what could have been.

“Our goal was to win this game, we tried to play our best beach volleyball and that first set was so close, so it’s very disappointing,” said Dressler.

“We have to look forward though, we have another game and we have a chance to do well in that game.

“In that first set we didn’t have the expectation, just the focus on the game and the Brazilians have a great feeling for when to change the tactics – this is something we can work on, put more focus on and make sure we do better in the future.

“But we’re young and we have time. We will remember the good points and take that forward.

Playing in front of thousands is one thing, but Dressler and Kunert had the extra edge of being in front of a very partisan crowd, playing their part in trying to roar them over the line.

That included an abundance of friends and family, a unique experience for the pair when you compare it to the globetrotting adventures of the tour.

And with the home comforts providing a special feeling, it’s an experience neither of the duo want to end any time soon.

“It was amazing to play in that crowd, to be able to see your friends and family in the crowd is pretty cool,” added Kunert.

“I live 10 minutes from the center court so I can get on my bicycle to get here – you don’t expect that to be able to happen, it’s great.

“My family are coming to every game, I’d love for them to see as much as possible. We played well in that game but we know we can still do better too.”

You can watch the Austrians in their final pool game, against Marlon Phillip and Daneil Williams, on BeachStream from 11.30am on Wednesday. Click here to sign-up!

Top seeds Alharo/Saymon were in focused form on the Red Bull Beach ArenaTop seeds Alharo/Saymon were in focused form on the Red Bull Beach Arena

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