22/07/2019 11:00
Borger and Sude aiming high at EuroBeachvolley
CEV EuroBeachVolley 2019

Stuttgart, Germany, July 22, 2019. There is not a single article about Germany’s success story in women’s Beach Volleyball published in recent years, which does not mention the ‘Golden Girls’ Laura Ludwig/Kira Walkenhorst. Even this piece does not make an exception to the rule. After winning Olympic gold in Rio de Janeiro and crowning themselves just a year later world champions in Vienna, it looked like this streak was about to continue but earlier this year Kira Walkenhorst announced that she had to take a long rest to look after a series of health problems. This message hit the German Beach Volleyball scene like an earthquake. After the dust settled, suddenly news after news followed about new teams and partnerships coming to the fore.

One of these newly formed tandems is Karla Borger teaming up with Julia Sude. Both met as toddlers for the first time, because Karla’s mother Cordula Pütter (a European champion in 1995) and Julia’s father Dr Burkhard Sude, a Beach Volleyball pioneer in Germany, knew each other very well, participating at the same tournaments, and having their kids with them on a regular basis.
From toddlers to professionals, both Karla and Julia have been touring the world for about ten years now. They previously played with different partners, they have known each other for a long time, and finally they decided to be on the same side of the net. The FIVB 4-Star tournament in Tokyo this week, serving as an Olympic test event, is their 11th international competition as a team.

They just left the World Championships in Hamburg with many impressions. “It was fantastic, to play in this amazing stadium. I think, this is the biggest stadium for Beach Volleyball ever, with up to 12,000 people in the stands, who are all plain excited about our sport, always fair, and always cheering for every single ball and point,” describes Julia Sude the unique atmosphere at the Stadium Am Rothenbaum, where usually tennis tournaments take place.

Karla Borger adds another important fact: “Such a big event in your home country is fantastic. Even more, a once in a lifetime experience. How many times do you have a world championship hosted in the country you were born and raised? Simply amazing. On the World Tour, we miss our friends and family a lot, they can only watch us via the live streaming or on TV. In Hamburg, they were all waiting for us near the mixed zone, enjoying the atmosphere at our workplace, cheering for us live in the stands. This is so unique and overwhelming. I get goose bumps only talking about it.”
“Yeah, I think the World Championships in Hamburg has brought Beach Volleyball to the next level, because the whole world was watching,” says Julia Sude.

That is one reason, they were a little sad when having to leave Hamburg with the 9th place, although netting the best result for Germany in the women’s tournament. Because the matches on the centre court were such an impressive experience. However, besides the important tournaments on the tour, where points are at stake to qualify for the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games, the next big competition is right in front of them: EuroBeachVolley 2019 in Moscow.

“This pre-Olympic season is fully packed with highlights, one of which is for sure the European Championships in Moscow, where we can prove our status in the European ranking. Moscow is a beautiful city and I think the people from Russia and from all over Europe will be very excited to see the matches at Luzhniki Sports Park,” says Julia Sude. Right after the 5-Star Major Series in Vienna, they will board a plane up north, heading to Moscow.

“We are awaiting exciting matches. When we look at our pool, we have with Daria Rudykh/Ksenia Dabizha local heroes, who for sure will enjoy much support from the fans. Joy Stubbe and Marleen van Iersel from the Netherlands are playing a quite good season, and with the Czechs Michala Kvapilova/Michaela Kubickova we are not square yet. We played them this year in Sydney and lost. So this is something that we have to settle,” says Karla Borger.

Julia Sude continues: “For sure every team will try to show their best performance, because it is all about earning important points for the Olympic qualification.”

If Julia and Karla live up to the expectations, they may finally account for an article where the names of Ludwig and Walkenhorst – with all due respect – are not going to appear.

For further information, visit the official event website

Many thanks to Tom Bloch for contributing to this article.

News nr. 20 of 32
25/07/2019 12:00:00
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16/07/2019 15:00:00
Graudina and Kravcenoka ready to leave their mark in Moscow

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