The Hague, the Netherlands, July 4, 2015 - The FIVB World Championship semifinal between home favourites Reinder Nummerdor & Christiaan Varenhorst and Brazil’s Pedro Solberg & Evandro Goncalves is going to be a rematch of the Stavanger Grand Slam quarterfinal just three weeks ago.
In Norway the Brazilians won 2-1 (14-21, 21-11, 15-10), but that doesn’t mean anything, Nummerdor said on Friday. “Not at all. Because we were dominating in the first set and we had a good plan. It was our own fault that we lost.”
Pedro could not agree more. “There will be pressure on them because they lost. But we could have lost that game, because it was very tight. This will be a whole new game.”
Although 29-year old Pedro is almost ten years younger than the 38-year old Nummerdor, they both have participated in five World Championships, three more than youngsters Evandro and Varenhorst.
For Pedro this edition is by far one of his favourites. “This was one of the best tournaments I have ever played in, if not the best one. For sure I have not played in an event like this before.”
He and Evandro started in Rotterdam and had a shaky beginning, barely making it out the pool with one win, while the Dutch reached the semis undefeated.
In The Hague the Brazilians will not only have to face Nummerdor and Varenhorst, but also over 5,000 Dutch fans. No problem, Pedro said. “I Actually I think it’s going to help us as much as it helps them, because we like to play in full stadiums. It doesn’t matter if they are against us. We have fun anyway.”
Nummerdor and Varenhorst called upon the fans: “Bring some orange. Help us through the last two days”, Nummerdor said.
Varenhorst added: “I keep focussed and play my own game, whether there are a hundred thousand people cheering my name or zero, I want to play my best. But it’s helping me a lot in the harder moments.”