The tension was palpable during the knockouts for the two final semifinal spots per gender of King of the Court Hamburg. In two winner-takes-all matches per gender only the teams coming out on top secured a longer stay in the tournament. It brought the best out in teams from the Netherlands, Japan, Poland and a team from Germany and Uruguay.
Five teams per gender had their ticket to Sunday’s semis already in the bag by winning their respective Phase 1 matches or the Playoffs. Ten teams remained for the knockouts and in two groups of five teams they played one final King of the Court match. And the stakes were high, only a 20 % chance of survival. Brutal odds when you’re facing four hungry teams.
In the first knockout match Sanne Keizer and Madelein Meppelink showed that it’s beneficial to have King of the Court experience. The ‘orange’ team became Dutch champions in 2020 and they earned bronze in the international tournament of King of the Court Utrecht 2020. With five minutes to go in the final round they exerted their dominance by making up the two-point deficit to Pleun Ypma and Laura Caluori and building a lead that would in the end give them the needed fifteen points.
The second knockout had the German crowds at Hamburg’s Stadion am Rothenbaum backing the German / Spanish combo of Cinja Tillmann and Angela Lobato. They won the first round, but had to concede to the Japanese duo of Miki Ishii and Yukako Suzuki in the two following rounds. When the time ran out in the final fifteen minutes the duo from Japan fell to their knees in a mixture of elation and fatigue. Suzuki and Ishii join Keizer / Meppelink in the semifinals that will be played Sunday morning.
Check the semifinals line-up here.
The evening finished with great entertainment. Two final matches to decide who would become semifinalists. In the first knockout Poland’s Piotr Kantor and Bartosz Losiak showed their excellence when pressed. Against Belgium’s Koekelkoren / Van Walle and the Dutch-American tandem of Van Tilburg and Worsley they were behind for a long time, but a show of force led them to victory.
In the second and last match of the day the German crowd had a lot to cheer for. Following yesterday’s injury of Julian Azaad, his partner Mauricio Vieyto called upon Paul Becker for his new mate. And when you least expect it, destiny has something in store for you. The pair had one training session and then went to battle Brazil’s Guto and Arthur and Norwegian Beachvolley Vikings Berntsen and Mol. The confidence of the German / Uruguayan team grew and they were the ones reaching fifteen before the time was up. They will find themselves in the semifinals on Sunday.
Check the semifinals line-up here.
German national tournament
Seven of the ten teams in the semifinals are then known, but the last remaining three had to come from the German championship. They played the finals today and next to reaching the podium the teams also earned the right to be a contender in the international tournament’s semifinals.
The first-ever German Queens were Chantal Laboureur and Sarah Schulz. Together with Victoria Bieneck / Isabel Schneider and Lea Kunst / Nele Schmitt they will represent Germany in the international tournament.
In the men’s draw favorites Julius Thole and Clemens Wickler were crowned as Kings, but they’re not done yet, Tomorrow they will try to win the international tournament as well. They are joined by twins Bennet and David Poniewaz and Jonas Reinhardt / Milan Sievers
Play start at 9.35 CEST, make sure you’re online to follow all the action. Join us on our livestream.