Edinburgh’s Robin Miedzybrodzki and Perth partner Sean Cook took Scottish beach volleyball to new heights at Portobello.
The pair helped Scotland win the men’s competition at the CEV Continental Cup to qualify for next year’s third round and a shot at a possible Olympic place.
Cook and Miedzybrodzki won the deciding “golden game” against Californian-based Irish pair Tim Church and Robert Brennan 27-25, 21-18. The Scots saved six set points in the first set. Ireland saved one set point at 21-22 but Cook put away the final point on Scotland’s second set point.
At 14-12 to Scotland in the second set, Ireland had to call a five-minute medical time-out for Brennan. He was able to resume but clearly did not have the same mobility and Scotland completed the job 21-18.
“It was a high-quality match and I was happy we kept our nerve to win that first set,” said Miedzybrodzki. “It has been a fantastic tournament. The weather today has brought the crowds in – I’ve played all over the world and this atmosphere compares to other events.”
Scotland’s women also reached the third round after finishing second behind England. Olympians Lynne Beattie and Shauna Mullin lost 21-18, 21-17 to Vicky Palmer and Jessica Grimson but secured the second qualifying place with a win over Northern Ireland.
Earlier, Mullin and Anneka Hastings beat Rhian McCarroll and Cait Donnelly 21-11, 21-5. Hastings finished off both set points with Scotland in command.
Beattie and Gillian Lyall settled it with a 21-8, 21-13 win over Catherine Toye and Melissa Taylor. Taylor suffered a calf injury at 13-8 to Scotland in the second set, leading to another medical time-out. She was able to resume but it only delayed the inevitable.
“It’s been a phenomenal weekend. To play at any time for your country is special. I don’t think it could have been a better weekend - to qualify against such good opposition is great,” Beattie said, “To have this weather and the crowd has been remarkable.”