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Olympic champion Jonas Reckermann ends career due to injury

Brink and Reckermann's Olympic gold brought unprecedented attention to beach volleyball in Germany

Berlin, Germany, January 10, 2013 – Just five month after winning Olympic gold, 33-year-old Jonas Reckermann will have to end his beach volleyball career due to injury.

“The decision was difficult, due to various reasons, but you cannot buy health and in the end health comes first,” said Reckermann. “I am thankful to everyone who helped me experience a long and successful beach volleyball career.”

“I really regret this because this year would undoubtedly have become interesting, but I entirely understand this step,” remarked his partner, Julius Brink.

While Reckermann’s shoulder recovered well after an operation at the beginning of October, it is his ongoing back problems that are forcing an end to his career. MRT examinations in late December showed, besides a known degenerative process in his spine, a cyst in the canal of the spinal cord which is putting pressure on a nerve. The Cologne native had interrupted his career once before due to back complaints, for a year in 2006, but this time he has no alternative but to stop playing.

According to his long-standing medical specialist, Dr. Antonius Kass, “maintaining his present training and tournament intensity would cause irreversible damage.”

The Brink/Reckermann duo are a massive sporting success story, with one Olympic victory, a World Championship, two European Championships and three German Championship titles. Reckermann also celebrated two further European Championships and German Championships with Markus Dieckmann.

“I would like to keep playing with Julius and the title defence on the Copacabana would have been a unique chance,” Reckermann said. He added that, off the beach court, the Brink/Reckermann partnership will not fade away. “We won’t go our separate ways.”

“We will definitely keep working together and be available for our fans, sponsors and partners,” added Brink.

Reckermann will also play a role, which still needs to be defined in detail, in Julius Brink’s new team. “Which role that will be is not clear, as this has happened so suddenly for us all,” said Reckermann. “I am sure that Julius will have a successful future with his new partner, too, and I wish both all the best!”

Julius Brink’s new partner will be his training partner, Sebastian Fuchs. With the current coaching trio of Markus Dieckmann, Hans Voigt and Stefan Hübner, as well as the agency Vitesse, the core team remains together.

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