Borger and Buthe first Europeans to reach women’s World Championships final
So far it has only been US or Brazilian teams that played for the women’s world title, but at the Mazury 2013 edition both USA and Brazil are missing.
Borger and Buthe beat USA’s 2009 world champion April Ross and her stand-in partner Whitney Pavlik 2-0 (21-15 21-19) and China’s 2011 bronze medallists Chen Xue and Zhang Xi defeated Brazil’s Liliane Maestrini and Barbara Seixas 2-0 (21-11 21-17) in the other semifinal on Saturday.
Unbelievable week for Germany
The German team had an excellent start this week topping the pool with three wins, but never would have thought they would end up in the final. “It feels really weird”, Buthe said. “Everyone is looking at me right now, it’s unbelievable we are in the final of a World Championship. Somebody will have to sit us down and make us believe it. “
“I think we did so well because we did not have any pressure. Our goal was 9th place, 5th would have been really good, but to make it to the final... We did not even think about that.”
In the first set against Ross and Pavlik, who filled in at the last moment for injured Jennifer Kessy and who’s best result so far was 25th on the World Tour, the Germans hardly made any mistakes.
In the second Borger and Buthe were trailing till 17-17, then it was point by point and at 20-19 Borger ended the match with another great shot to the back of the court.
“I think we were very strong mentally. We know what the other one needs. Karla kept me calm and told me exactly what to do”, Buthe said.
Xue and Zhang Xi aim to become first Chinese world champions
China's Xue Zhang Xi can become the first Chinese world champions tonight at 18.00. It's only the second time China have reached a FIVB World Championship final after Jia Tian and Jie Wang lost to Misty May-Treanor and Kerri Walsh in 2007.
The Chinese started aggressively and overpowered Lili and Seixas in the first, but Brazil took a two-point lead at the beginning of the second. China was trailing until Xue’s excellent block got them a two-point lead at 19-17. A powerful spike by Zhang Xi and another block by Xue finished the match at 21-17.
“Brazil moved us around a lot in the second set”, Zhang Xi said. “But we played a good match because my partner was blocking well and it was easy for me to play.”
The Chinese pair missed out on the last three World Tour events to play on the national tour and needed some time to adjust to the international level again, even losing one of their pool play matches at the start of the event.
“We were not sure if we would do well today, because we did not play our best in the first three matches. But I think we are finally getting our rhythm. We are very excited, because our dream is about to come true.”
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