2018-08-04 16:36:00 CEST
Dutch boys in the hunt for medals after beating Brazil
Poreč, Croatia, 2015. Three summers ago, Alex Brouwer and Robert Meeuwsen made history by becoming the first champions of a Beach Volleyball Major Series tournament.
The Dutchmen triumphed on the Croatian coast and have since gone onto win four international gold medals and scoop bronze at the Olympics in Rio.
Despite a bronze in Gstaad and a silver in Hamburg, Alex and Robert haven’t collected the top prize in a Major since that sunny day in Poreč – but the pair now have a chance to put that right after reaching the semifinals of the A1 Major Vienna presented by Swatch.
“I remember the tournament in Poreč, it was great fun, and obviously great to win,” said Meeuwsen after the pair’s comeback win over reigning world champion Evandro Gonçalves and his new partner Vitor Felipe. “It was great because it was the first time we saw levels of an event so high.
“Now it’s about time we got another.”
The heroes from Holland finished fifth Fort Lauderdale and Gstaad but are now guaranteed a higher finish on the Danube Island after their latest victory in Vienna.
But with either Doppler/Horst or Mol/Sørum waiting in the semifinal, Alex is well aware of the challenge the pair face in their bid to reach the final.
“The competition is so, so high,” said the defender. “The level is incredible, you have to work so hard for every single point otherwise you’re going home.
“These guys [Evandro/Vitor] have been one of the more stable Brazilian teams so to comeback and beat them is great. Usually I’m a power guy but they stopped me from unleashing that but it was good to be able to change up my game a bit.
“But Clemens and Alex, in their hexennkessel as they say here in Vienna [translated meaning witch’s cauldron] have been performing so well while the boyband, Anders and Christian, have been on fire, so we’re looking forward to playing either team.”
The men’s semifinals begins at 1pm CEST on Sunday – watch live on BeachStream!