Vikings march on

06.07.2019 - Hamburg

Unbeatable favourites make it look easy

It shouldn’t be this easy. Not here at their first World Championships. Not here against the Olympic silver medalists, Daniele Lupo and Paolo Nicolai, giants of the World Tour for so long.

Anders Mol and Christian Sørum talk about “Viking mentality” – in all honesty the requirement to pull on those reserves of Scandinavian strength has not been needed. In what seemed like a training session, the Norwegians cruised an unfathomably simple 21-13, 21-11.

Remember this is their first ever World Championships. Remember, they are just 22 and 23 years old.

The pair will face either German heroes Julius Thole and Clemens Wickler or Nick Lucena and Phil Dalhausser of the USA. A team from Germany, who will be backed by 10,000-plus fans, or a meeting against legends of beach volleyball. Anders’ idol is fellow blocker Dalhausser.

Whoever they play, it’s going to be big, it’s going to be special, and the Vikings will be ready. Preparation for this pair is nothing new.

“We will fight whoever we play,” said Mol. “We’ll fight against the German fans if they win. We’ve done it before, here last year, in a semi-final at the World Tour Finals. If it’s Germany we’re ready for a fight. If it’s the USA, it’ll be the same – and they’ve been playing really well in their last few matches.”

That their quarter-final win was over Italy and not Germany already helped settled any pre-match anxieties, especially when a small pocket of noise Norwegian fans were there to lend their support.

“We felt at home when the Norway crowd are here,” added Anders. “It was like a home crowed and that was really helpful to settle any nerves. It felt amazing from the very first ball.”

Can they reach the final? Time will tell… 6.30pm CEST to be precise. Don’t miss it.