In April 2017 Sophia Klee became the youngest German Junior Champion ever
In April 2017 Sophia Klee won the German Junior Champion Singles title, beating Lotta Rose 4-1 in the finals. Sophia Klee was 13 years old at the time; the junior event is open to players up to 18 years of age. She was the youngest player to ever win the Junior Championship Title in Germany.
Sophia Klee currently holds four youth titles, having also won the German Championships in Cadets Singles, and the Doubles both in Juniors and in Cadets. Adding to that, she won the German ranking tournaments top 48, top 24 and top 12 for cadets, not losing a single match. Overall, she has had an outstanding 12 months nationally.
Read more below the facts
She moves very well and is mentally strongEvelyn Simon
Runner up at ITTF Worlds Hope 2015, Runner up Swedish Open Cadets 2017,
German Junior and Cadet Singles and Doubles Champion 2017, German Cadet Singles Champion 2016. Bronze medallist in Doubles at the German Championships women 2017.
players born 2003
World: no. 14
Europe: no. 7
Challenges in Sweden
Internationally Sophia has also started to achieve good results. At the Swedish Open in Örebro she became second in the Cadet Singles, losing in the finals to Hong Kong’s 15-year-old Lee Ka Yee (ranked fourth on the Cadet World Ranking List in April 2017) but defeating her team mate Chau Wing Sze, the World’s number 12.
“It was a successful but also a very hard competition for me”, Sophia Klee tells us. “I also won the Under-14 category, and the play-offs in both categories were played the same day. So I had to play one match after another and hardly had any time to eat anything!”
Strong fighting spirit
From the stands in Örebro, Sophia’s strong fighting spirit was very visible, as was her ability to keep her head clear whilst playing close and tough games, and this despite having had no rest between matches. We were also impressed by Sophia’s safety and her skilful ways of returning difficult balls from far back the table, showing a great deal of touch for the game.
Star quality aged nine
Sophia Klee is not a newcomer, neither in Germany or internationally. In Germany she emerged on the scene aged nine in the Andro Talent Cup where she won the tournament for young upcoming stars. She then repeated her win the year after. Internationally she was runner up at the ITTF Mini Hopes tournament held in Shanghai 2015.
These early results were made possible by Sophia’s own early start at playing table tennis.
“I was four years old when I began playing”, Sophia says, “Both my older brother Johan and my older sister Julia play table tennis and I of course always wanted to do what they did.”
A fascination with table tennis
Aged five, Sophia started playing in her local club, SC Niestetal, and by the time she was seven years old she was practising four times a week, just like Johan and Julia.
“It was easy. The hall is only two minutes away from our house. In the beginning I would play just for fun, but over the years it became more serious. But my fascination and joy for the sport are the same, if not increasing. There are so many things you are able to create with the ball concerning spin, speed and placement. There are a lot of different categories to play in – singles, doubles, mixed and teams. And you get to meet a lot of nice people.“
No pressure in the Bundesliga
The first time that Sophia went abroad to represent Germany was to Sweden for a six nations event. Today, aged 14, she is quite experienced in representing her home country. During the summer she will most likely play in the European Youth Championships, where she will be ranked among the top 8. In the autumn she will make her debut in the first Bundesliga, representing TUS Bad Driburg.
“These are my challenges for the near future: To handle the pressure of always being the favourite. And to manage the change to Bundesliga level as well as I possibly can. But in the Bundesliga, I have no pressure. There I should be able to play relaxed and to feel free.”
I started to play table tennis when I was 4 years oldSophia Klee