German Beach Volleyball Team Boycott Qatar Tournament After Bikini Ban
German beach volleyball players are threatening to snub the upcoming FIVB World Tour event in Qatar over the country's strict clothing rules that forbid athletes from wearing bikinis while competing.
Both Karla Borger and Julia Sud feel so passionately about the issue that they're willing to sit out of the prestigious tournament until their voices are heard.
"We are there to do our job, but are being prevented from wearing our work clothes," Borger told German radio station Deutschlandfunk.
"We play at 30 to 40 degrees in the midday heat and of course we're used to playing in a bikini. This is really the only country and the only tournament where a government tells us how to do our job - we are criticising that.
"We are asking whether it's necessary to hold a tournament there at all. It is definitely something that has to be questioned."
The event in March is the first time Doha has ever played host to a women's beach volleyball tournament.
And when the venue and dates for the tour were revealed, it was confirmed that female players had to cover their skin by wearing shirts and with trousers underneath rather than their usual bikini attire.
While it's not mid-summer in Qatar in March, the country's temperature levels are still extremely high with an average of 33 degrees Celsius.
But according to the sport's governing body the FIVB, this move is "out of respect for the culture and traditions of the host country".
What makes the duo's frustrations even more understandable is the fact that Doha made a clothing rules exception for women competing in the World Athletics Championships back in 2019.
Due to the insane heat, track and field athletes were granted permission to wear their usual attire rather than having to cover up.
But it seems FIVB World Tour event organisers and Doha officials are refusing to budge when it comes to Borger and Sud's case.
Featured Image Credit: PA
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