5 September 2023 – Düsseldorf

Anticipation for Rhine-Ruhr 2025

679 days still seem like a long time to go until the 2025 FISU World University Games in Rhine-Ruhr, Germany, will be officially kicked off. Athletes’ excitement level, however, was already up and on the rise when speaking to them at this year’s edition of the FISU Summer Games in Chengdu, China.

“I am not too old for Rhine-Ruhr yet, so of course I am looking forward to compete in Germany in 2025,” the German Antonia Kinzel said after having won the gold medal in the women’s discus event.

Antonia Kinzel ©Lea Riedel

Also Matěj Zábojník, a Czech swimmer who has competed in Chengdu, will still be eligible for Rhine-Ruhr 2025 and hopes to qualify for the Games. Is an event in Germany as exciting to the Czech as the previous one in China though?

“I am still excited to go because University Games are an awesome competition and Germany is close,” the student at Masarykovy University in Brno said.

Matěj Zábojník ©Instagram matess1

A long travel to Germany however will be waiting for Maggie Foley, an Australian rower, hoping to qualify for the next Summer Games’ edition after just having competed in China.

“I have never been to Germany before, but it’s on my bucket list,” the Australian student-athlete said. “When I saw [the next Games] will be in Europe, in Germany, I felt like that’s more of an inspiration and motivation to go.”

Maggie Foley (dritte von rechts) ©Instagram _maggie_f_

Almost equally far away located from Germany but at the same time equally excited is Celeste Ferrao Wan from Singapore. “I’ve never been to Europe, so I’m really excited if I get the chance to go,” the Singapore water polo player said. “I don’t really know much about German culture, but I would definitely love to visit the country.”

Ali Ngaimoko, a sprinter from Uganda, happily recalls his memories from visiting Germany in the past. “I’ve been in Germany before and had fun there,” the Ugandan sprinter said. “I believe we met some nice people there, so I look forward to be there again.”

©Arndt Falter

679 days equals a bit less than two years before more than 10.000 athletes from around 170 countries will come to the Rhine-Ruhr region to compete in as many as 18 different sports. The cities of Bochum, Duisburg, Düsseldorf, Essen and Mülheim an der Ruhr cannot wait to welcome the best student-athletes of the world and watch them fighting for the medals from 16th to 27th July 2025.

Author: Annika Saunus, FISU Young Reporter