GUTFLEISCH Oliver (GER) – PVE – Multi-Medal International Athlete (Standing) for both GBR and GER. International Athlete Representative 1996-2006, and player mentor.



Oliver started standing volleyball in 1992 in the UK, two years after his car accident, before that he was an active volleyball player from 1983. His nick name is ‘the goldfish’.

Those who had the greatest influence on him as a person and sportsman were:

His fellow sportsmen, dealing with great courage, optimism and determination with their disability; making it an ability and chance; guiding him after the depression and grief of his accident; helping him to stand up in every respect

His coach Athanasios Papageorgiou for being a great teacher for volleyball and life (a “sensei” in the true sense), together with his passion to win and anything else in life where passion matters.

The greatest disappointment for me was the failure of WOVD and the NPCs to keep our wonderful sport of standing volleyball alive as a Paralympic discipline after Sydney 2000, and the consequent disappearance of standing volleyball internationally after Cambodia 2011. It was in my opinion the most versatile and inclusive disabled team sport, helping men to get up, stand up, return to and perform in life

Event involvement:

1993 France – European Championship – player for Great Britain
1994 Germany – World Championship – player for Great Britain
1995 Poland – European Championship – player for Great Britain
1996 USA – Paralympics (7th) – player for Great Britain
1997 European Championship (Silver Medal) – banned because of returning to GER
1998 Poland – World Championship (Silver Medal) – first event as a player for GE
1999 Montreal, Canada – Pan-AM Open & Sydney Qualifier (Silver Medal) – player
2000 Sydney, Australia – Paralympics (Gold Medal) – player
2001 Slovakia – World Cup (Silver Medal) – player
2002 Poland – World Championship (Bronze Medal) – player
2003 Greece – World Cup (Bronze Medal) – player
2004 Germany – World Championship (Bronze Medal) – player
2005 Canada – World Cup (Silver Medal) – player
2006 Roermond, The Netherlands – World Championships (Silver Medal) – player
2007 Cambodia – World Cup (Gold Medal) – player
2008 Slovakia – World Championship (Gold Medal) – player
2009 Cambodia – World Cup (Gold Medal) – player

Awards received:

Paralympic Games 2000: gold medal in Sydney with Germany
Paralympic Games 1996: 7th place in Atlanta with Great Britain, captain of the team
Several gold, silver and bronze medals with Germany at World, European championships as well as World Cups
Several awards for best setter, best libero, best defence and all-star team
Awarded 2000 with the Silver Laurel Leaf in Germany (highest award a sportsman can achieve in Germany)

Official post held:

International athlete representative from 1996 – 2006

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