December 4, 2023

First the drama, then the title

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Tired but thrilled: Clemens Weinrich (left) and Markus Kroesen in Mallorca. © Private

This story almost ended differently. Completely different. But Vellmar SSC volleyball players Markus Kroesen and Clemens Weinrich experienced how a lot of bad luck eventually turned into a lot of luck.

For a week they fought with the German national team in Mallorca for the Over-40 World Cup title. And after 25:16 and 25:17 in the final against Serbia, DVV could really celebrate the gold medal this time after finishing second last year.

“It’s a great feeling to come home with a medal,” Crossen says. But success was hanging by a thread. In the semifinal against the USA, Weinrich got into a three-man stance, landing on his tiptoes and leaning forward. “When the physical therapist told me it was a metatarsal fracture, I didn’t even want to believe it,” Elgershauser says. And that’s not all. Since Markus Duberstein, who replaced him, also injured his ankle, suddenly there was no middle man left. “In fact, you have to make a special substitution in such a situation, but the referee did not allow it. “The semi-final was now on a knife’s edge – and on the verge of being cancelled,” Weinrich explains.

Jörg Ahmann, a bronze medalist in beach volleyball at Sydney 2000 and now a teammate of Vilmar in the over-40 team, almost exploded in front of the referee, but was unable to do anything. “So I had to go on court as an injured player because Markus Duberstein could no longer play. Once the ball was in play, I always limped out, but I had to serve to win the set,” Weinrich said. It worked. After Clear victories in the preliminary round against Hungary, Italy and Canada as well as a close match against Norway, the North American national team was also defeated. In the final match it was very close until the first set was 7:7. The rest was a joint celebration with the German women’s national team, which won Shortly afterwards also won the gold medal with a time of 15:13 in the tie-break.

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Incidentally, Crocin, who also competed in the Over-48 competition, faced a double challenge. “The physiotherapist had to start working on me from Wednesday afternoon, otherwise I wouldn’t have lasted much longer. Sometimes I was playing three matches a day, and the temperature in the hall was often more than 30 degrees,” says Crossin. “At least the pool at our hotel was so warm that we were always able to replenish our muscles,” said coach of local regional league team SSC Wilmar, who eventually won a bronze medal with the German team in the older age group. naturally”.

What will happen next for both of them? “The wire should come out after eight weeks, and after twelve weeks I might be able to play again,” says Weinrich, who has already undergone surgery. We were supposed to go on vacation after the World Cup, but nothing will happen. Kroesen will return to action in Villemar on Saturday, as SSC’s match against first team Rudheim awaits (see initial report below).

Next year there will be a World Cup again. Maybe in Madrid. At least that’s what’s rumored in gaming circles. Kroesen and Weinreich are likely to return alongside former Bundesliga players such as Nicklas Rademacher and Henning Machtens. Perhaps the story will end without any drama at all.

Back home: A week later at the World Championships in Mallorca, Clemens Weinrich (left) and Markus Kroesen proudly present their medals.
Back home: A week later at the World Championships in Mallorca, Clemens Weinrich (left) and Markus Kroesen proudly present their medals. © Dieter Schachschneider