Talking about my goalkeeper career tells a funny story because I switched sports from soccer to hockey. My intention was to become a goal scorer in hockey but sometimes things turn out to be very different.
My coach asked me at the age of 12, after I’ve been a striker for two years, to put on this strange kit (goalkeeper kit) and try to save balls instead of scoring them. I might not have convinced him with my goal scoring abilities I guess…
In the youth teams it was usual that everybody was in goal for one game before another player was in for the next game, but after I’ve had my first game the rotation suddenly stopped and it was just me in goal. I still don’t know if that has happened because of my abilities in goal keeping or my non-abilities as a goal scorer:)
Nevertheless I loved goal keeping from the very beginning.
I’ve gone through all the youth national teams of Germany. Also I was very lucky to play in the first German Senior hockey league from the age of 16. My team didn’t have a goalkeeper at that time which gave me the opportunity to play at highest level from a young age. I’ve learned a lot during that time and was nominated for the senior national team at the age of 21.
Since then I collected over 100 caps for Germany. I’ve gone through many ups and downs with that team but also in my personal career. Becoming European champion 2007 and participating at the Olympics 2012 as Number 1 were my career highlights. They were followed by some disappointment such as not making it the number 1 in Beijing or missing world cups due to some serious injuries.
After all,I’m still loving that crazy world of goalkeeping so that is what keeps me going until Rio 2016. I guess it’s because I realised that saving goals means just as much as scoring goals to me.
Goalkeeper from UHC Hamburg and German National Team