06.07.2019 - Hamburg, Germany
Julius Thole and Clemens Wickler continue their love story with Hamburg and the latest chapter was by far the most special one so far as the Germans secured a massive victory over world number ones Anders Mol and Christian Sørum of Norway to advance to the gold medal match of the World Championships in their home soil.
The Germans came from behind as the Beach Volley Viking took the first set 21-17, but backed by nearly 13,000 voices who never stopped chanting their names in a packed Red Bull Beach Arena Thole and Wickler reacted to win the next two 21-16, 15-12 and make the iconic Rothenbaum Stadium explode in joy.
Thole, 22, and Wickler, 24, have the chance of becoming the youngest team to ever win the World Championships and if they make it the blocker will surpass Brazil’s André Loyola as the youngest player to do so.
They will become the first German team to play in a World Championships final since Julius Brink and Jonas Reckermann won gold in Stavanger 2009 and the first to do it at home.
The Germans had a solid campaign in Hamburg, where they finished fourth at the World Tour Finals last year, by winning all their seven matches with just one set dropped and eliminating four world champions and Olympic medalists on the way – Brazil’s Alison Cerutti, USA’s Phil Dalhausser and the Netherlands’ Alexander Brouwer and Robert Meeuwsen.
Their opponents in the gold medal match will be Russians Oleg Stoyanovskiy and Viacheslav Krasilnikov, who topped Americans Tri Bourne and Trevor Crabb in the other semi-final. The teams have played twice this year and the Russians won both.