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16/09/2020 11:30
U20 European champions Namike/Brailko set their sight on next goal
CEV EuroBeachVolley 2020

Jurmala, Latvia, September 16, 2020. On Sunday, Anete Namike and Varvara Brailko were crowned new U20 European champions in Brno and two days later they played their first game at the EuroBeachVolley on their home soil. The 18-year-old Latvian rising stars use the opportunity to gain important experience playing at the international senior event which started yesterday in Jurmala.

In their first match they faced prominent Czech duo Barbora Hermannova/Marketa Slukova. Despite suffering a straight sets defeat, the young Latvian team showed many impressive plays getting loud ovations from the fans, who came to support the newly crowned U20 champions. "We were really happy to win the U20 European Championships, but the senior tournament is a completely different level. Going up against one of the best teams in the world in Hermannova/Slukova was a great experience," said Anete Namike after their game. 

Varvara Brailko and Anete Namike celebrating their final victory at #EuroBeachVolleyU20

Both players point out that their greatest advantage is team spirit. "We are playing together for the third or fourth year, so we kinda used to each other. We have a good team spirit and that's one of the most important things to have in the team."

Beach Volleyball is a very popular and successful sport in Latvia, but they don't have anybody they look up to in their homeland, because like they say they play totally a different style to the defending European champions Graudina/Kravcenoka and they are a lot of shorter. "My favourite player is Heather Bansley of Canada, because of her quickness and defensive ability," explained Namike.

They both decided to take up the sport thanks to their parents. "My parents played indoor Volleyball, so when I was seven years old, I began playing indoor Volleyball, too. Later I switched to Beach Volleyball," admitted Varvara Brailko. "Actually, I also started because of my parents, they both are really big fans of Beach Volleyball, so they showed me that there was such an opportunity and that's why I started," said Namike.

Anete Namike in action at the #EuroBeachVolley in Jurmala 

Today at the EuroBeachVolley they will play against Alexandra Jupiter/Aline Chamereau (FRA) with a spot in next round at stake. Looking further, they plan to gain another trophy. "I personally prefer to keep my dreams for myself, but our nearest goal is to win a title at the U19 World Championships."

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