2018-04-08 14:05:00 CEST

Kiwi comeback kings

O’Dea brothers reach the quarterfinals the hard way

Ben (left) and brother Sam have won all three games Down Under, losing the first set in each matchBen (left) and brother Sam have won all three games Down Under, losing the first set in each match

Three times at this Commonwealth Games New Zealand brothers Ben and Sam O’Dea have lost the first set. Three times they’ve fought back and won each time.

Their latest dramatic triumph, over England’s Jake Sheaf and Chris Gregory, was a vital one as it ensured the All Blacks topped Pool C.

However the beach volley siblings would rather they didn’t have to keeping making things difficult for themselves.

“We need to find a way to start better but it’s really positive that we’re winning the second and third sets and playing better towards the end of matches,” Ben told us after the ding-dong battle on Coolantanga Beach.”

The duo, who came close to winning a medal on the World Tour in Holland in February, finishing fourth in Aalsmeer, believe their dogged performances can help them in the eliminations stages.

“It’s been a real emotional rollercoaster so far,” added Ben. “In the next round nothing will be foreign to us. We’ve been in all sorts of situations now, we’ve been up, we’ve been down, and in different scenarios. Other teams have cruised through and had some easy games so it’s great to have some battles.”

Meanwhile home heroes Taliqua Clancy and Mariafe Artatcho Del Solar also confirmed their position at the top of Pool A in the women’s draw with a straight sets win over Scotland’s Lynne Beattie and Melissa Coutts.

The home crowd were treated to a fine performance from their gold medal hopes in front of a packed Center Court, as the world number 19s stormed to victory and first place in the pool.

In the evening session’s opening match, Cypriot duo Dimitris Apostolou and Georgios Chrysostomou now wait to find if they have qualified for the quarterfinals after they beat Mozambique’s Carlos Acacio and Delcio Soares in straight sets.

On Monday the final pool play matches take place before the draw for the quarterfinals takes place in the evening – men’s 9pm (AEST) and women’s at 11pm (AEST).

Click here for all the details you need to know from the schedule from the Commonwealth Games.

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