Life’s just a beach for Iran

Sport360 - - Beach Soccer - By Staff Re­porter @Sport360 ✉ ed­i­to­rial@sport360.com

Iran out­played Euro­pean cham­pi­ons Rus­sia to seal a 4-2 win in the fi­nal and get their hands on the Huawei Intercontinental Beach Soc­cer Cup Dubai ti­tle.

The Asian cham­pi­ons and 2013 world cham­pi­ons held on for a con­vinc­ing win against the team who had ended de­fend­ing world cham­pi­ons Brazil’s 66-match un­beaten record in the semi-fi­nals.

Ab­bas Hashempour’s men were on the front foot from the off as they raced into a 3-0 lead, Mostafa Kiani’s driven free-kick took a de­flec­tion to open the scor­ing.

Mo­ham­mad Ma­soumizadeh then stuck out a foot to re­di­rect a stray shot into the Rus­sian net for 2-0 and Iran were in a com­mand­ing po­si­tion when re­serve goal­keeper Hamid Be­hzad­pour sent a thun­der­bolt past his op­po­site num­ber, via the head of the Rus­sian de­fender.

Ar­tur Pa­porot­nyi struck to re­duce the deficit to 3-1, but a sec­ond own goal made it 4-1 to Iran.

Pa­porot­nyi gave his side a glim­mer of hope with five min­utes to go but the Iran de­fence held firm for a fa­mous vic­tory.

In the day’s other matches, three­times cham­pi­ons Brazil set­tled for third place with a 5-3 win over Egypt.

The USA sur­prised Spain with a 4-3 score­line to fin­ish fifth, and hosts the UAE came from be­hind to pip Tahiti 7-6 and fin­ish sev­enth.

Kings of the sand cas­tle: Iran.

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