Baku, June 20, AZERTAC
Both previously invincible Italian pairs were knocked out of the men's Beach Volleyball competition in the round of 16 at Beach Arena on Saturday morning.
Matteo and Paolo Ingrosso, and Alex Ranghier and Enrico Rossi had looked irresistible in winning their respective pools without dropping a set earlier in the week, but both fell in three sets in the first serious challenge they faced at Baku 2015.
On centre court, the Ingrosso twins rallied from a set down against Dmitry Barsouk and Yaroslav Koshkarev of Russia, but ran out of steam in the third set and lost it 15-6.
"We played badly and it was very hot," said Paolo Ingrosso. "We suffered from physical problems, we had nothing left. We made mistakes on our serve and side-out – our movements on court were difficult.
"We didn't arrive here in our best condition. We played 12 matches at a tournament in Norway and we got only one day off before the start of this competition. We paid the consequences for it."
Ranghier and Rossi looked to be cruising on court two when they took the first set 21-12 against Premysl Kubala and Jan Hadrava. But the Czechs came back and closed out two tight sets 21-19 and 15-13 to stay alive in the tournament.
The men's competition continues later on Saturday with the quarter-finals starting at 17:00.