LE SCAN SPORT – German women’s beach volleyball stars Karla Borger and Julia Sude have announced that they will boycott a tournament in Qatar due to the bikini ban on the pitch.
The professional Beach Volleyball season did not begin until a first controversy arose. As Doha is due to host the first circuit tournament of the International Beach Volleyball Federation (FIVB) from March 8 to 12, German stars Karla Borger and Julia Sude have announced their intention to boycott the tournament due to the ban on being able to evolve in a bikini. “We are there to do our work but we are prevented from wearing our work clothes”, justified the first quoted Sunday evening on the airwaves of the German public radio Deutschlandfunk. It really is the only country and the only tournament where a government tells us how to do our job. We are critical of that. ”
It is the first time that Qatar has hosted such a FIVB women’s tournament, having held a men’s competition for seven years, and in 2019 the World Beach Games, where players were allowed to wear swimsuits. Players were advised to wear T-shirts and long pants rather than the usual high-cut swimsuits. A decision motivated, according to the FIVB, by “respect for the culture and traditions of the host country”.
“We are wondering if it is really necessary for a tournament to be held there”
In Spiegel magazine, Karla Borger, vice-world champion in the discipline, insisted that while in normal times she was happy to “adapt to a country”, the extreme heat that reigns in Qatar makes necessary to wear a bikini. Her teammate Julia Sude noted that Qatar had made exceptions for female athletes at the World Athletics Championships in Doha in 2019. On Deutschlandfunk, Borger questioned the relevance of appointing Qatar as the host country of ‘such a competition.
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“We are wondering if there is really a need for a tournament to be held there,” she continued. Qatar, which is due to host the 2022 FIFA World Cup, has made it a specialty to organize major sporting events, despite several controversies, particularly around its lack of tradition in competitive sport, its extreme climate, as well as the working conditions of employees at certain sports venues.