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2017-07-28 18:10:00 CEST

Humans of Beach Volleyball

Giulia’s #WorldChampsVienna story

Every now and then you meet someone in life who strikes a chord, someone a little different, someone a little special. It’s often taken for granted when working at an international sporting event since you’re surrounded by thousands of people, from different continents. Standing in the middle of it all listening to people tell their stories in different languages, you realize that you are all there for a common purpose – to celebrate sport and beach volleyball in all its glory. It’s where lasting friendships are made. It’s where memories are born. But still, it’s easy to get drawn into the festivities and never take the time to smell the proverbial flowers. Enter Giulia Sui. One of the most interesting people we’ve ever met.

Giulia at the FIVB Beach Volleyball World Championships presented by A1. Photocredit: Beach MajorsGiulia at the FIVB Beach Volleyball World Championships presented by A1. Photocredit: Beach Majors

Giulia is currently a volunteer at the FIVB Beach Volleyball World Championships presented by A1 but her journey to Vienna started a long time ago, in 2007 to be exact. One year before the 2008 Beijing Olympics. Giulia had been working in broadcasting for CCTV (China Central Television) at the time. That year, a test competition was run countrywide in which broadcasters entered in order to check their readiness for the Olympics. Even though she played indoor volleyball in high-school and university, she stumbled upon beach volleyball.

“No-one had experience in sports presentation and beach volleyball, and, no one really wanted to do it,” explained Giulia. “It was because it was a hard job and you spend a lot of time outside in the sun, but I was like ‘I’ll do it, I don’t mind learning something’.” She fell in love with the sport immediately.

The next year she found herself alongside the Chinese sports elite as the Sports Presentation General Director at the Beijing Olympics in 2008.

Giulia at the Beijing Olympics in 2008. Giulia at the Beijing Olympics in 2008.

But little did she know that her life would do a complete 180. Unfortunately, due to circumstances beyond her control, she had to leave the world of sport behind her. She found herself out of Beijing, back in her small home town, taking on the role of full-time daughter on a permanent basis. It was hard for her. Explaining how she cared for her ailing father brought tears to her eyes: “He was my protector, I loved him unconditionally.”

The third anniversary of her father’s death last month marked a turning point in her life. She was finally ready to take life by the reigns again and go go go!

She had never volunteered for anything before but flew all the way from Qing Dao to Vienna especially to be a part of the World Championships.

She is backing Team China at the event. There are currently two Chinese ladies teams competing namely: Wang F./Yue and Wang X. X./Xue.

Giulia with team Wang F./Yue at the FIVB Beach Volleyball World Championships presented by A1. Photocredit: Beach MajorsGiulia with team Wang F./Yue at the FIVB Beach Volleyball World Championships presented by A1. Photocredit: Beach Majors

Giulia is one of the humans of beach volleyball, whose stories are different but all the same. If you see her – be sure to say hi.

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