Hamburg, Germany, August 18, 2018 - The “hottest” and “youngest” beach volleyball team on planet earth surpassed several legends of the sport here on Saturday evening as Anders Mol and Christian Sorum of Norway captured their fourth-straight gold medal by winning the men’s finale at the $800,000 Beach Volleyball FIVB World Tour Finals at Rothenbaum Stadium.
With their 2-0 (21-19, 21-17) gold medal victory in 40 minutes over ninth-seeded Michal Bryl/Grzegorz Fijalek of Poland, the second-seeded Mol and Sorum shared the $150,000 first-place prize - the largest paycheck ever for winning a beach volleyball tournament.
With FIVB World Tour gold medals in the five weeks at events in Switzerland and Austria at the Gstaad and Vienna Majors and a podium-topping performance four weeks ago at the European Championships in the Netherlands, the 21-year-old Mol and 22-year-old Sorum have accumulated over $253,000 in winnings since July 15.
Atlanta 1996 Olympic champions Karch Kiraly and Kent Steffes had established the beach volleyball record at any level by winning $245,000 in capturing titles at four-straight events at the end of the 1993 season and the start of the 1994 domestic seasons in the United States.
Rio 2016 Olympic champions Alison Cerutti and Bruno Oscar Schmidt established the international record at $231,000 in winning four-straight events as the Brazilians started the streak by claiming the 2015 World Championships in the Netherlands followed by FIVB World Tour titles in Switzerland, Japan and the United States.
Saturday’s finale was the second gold meeting in three weeks between the Norwegians and Bryl/Fijalek partnership. On August 5 at the Vienna Major, Mol and Sorum defeated the Polish pair 2-0 (21-12, 21-17) in 38 minutes in the Austrian capital.
Bryl and Fijalek, who had defeated the Norwegians in the first two FIVB meetings between the two teams before losing the next three matches to Mol and Sorum, split $80,000 for placing second. In pool play on Wednesday at the World Tour Finals, the young Vikings defeated Bryl and Fijalek 2-0 (21-18, 21-16) in 34 minutes.
To reach Saturday’s gold medal match, Mol and Sorum defeated top-seeded Julius Thole/Clemens Wickler of Germany 2-1 (21-16, 16-21, 15-9) in 60 minutes while Bryl and Fijalek posted a 2-0 (21-17, 21-15) semifinal win in 51 minutes over fourth-seeded compatriots Piotr Kantor/Bartosz Losiak.
In the bronze medal match, Kantor and Losiak earned Poland’s second spot on Saturday’s podium by out-lasting Thole and Wickler 2-1 (19-21, 21-15, 15-13) in 60 minutes. Kantor and Losiak shared $50,000 for finishing third and the young Germans split $35,000.