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Boulton and Johns record career best win to reach last four of London 2012 test event

Lucy Boulton (right) and Denise Johns had to fight for every point to reach the semifinals of the VIsa FIVB Beach Volleyball International
London, Great Britain, August 13, 2011 – Local favourites Lucy Boulton and Denise Johns needed to record a career-best victory to reach the semifinals of the Visa FIVB Beach Volleyball International and delight the crowds at Horse Guard’s Parade.

The British duo won 21-19, 21-18 against second seeds Chen Xue and Xi Zhang who were bronze medallists at the Beijing 2008 Olympic Games and the 2011 FIVB Swatch Beach Volleyball World Championships. The victory now sets up a semifinal clash against 2009 world champions Jennifer Kessy and April Ross.

“We’ve played other top five, top ten teams before and always lost, but we played well and like D (Denise) said the pressure was off us and on them,” Boulton said. "We can compete with those teams, but to win and especially in two sets I’d say that was the best of the career so far.

“We had quite a specific game plan. In the end we decided we were going to start on the right side player, the left hander and that is how we went out and we stuck with that the whole way through. But we also had to have our consistent sideout and that’s what kept us in the game. Then if they gave us a little chance and gave us even a little sniff, we would take those points, especially at the end of sets.”

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London, Great Britain | August 9-14
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The pair needed to be at their very best throughout the game against a side ranked number one in the FIVB World Rankings, 73 places higher than Boulton and Johns.

“It’s pretty surreal,” Johns said. “We came in not expecting to do much. We were going to put our game out there, but we weren’t expected to win.

“So we were just able to play free without any pressure. They were the ones under pressure, because they were expected to win. I glad with the way we played and just fought and came out on top.”

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