Bunbury’s Koombana Bay is set to host a huge week of Beach Volleyball with more than 150 teams confirmed to play across Volley by the Bay’s three competitions.
Comprising the Alcohol. Think Again WA Beach tour, Australian U23 Beach Volleyball Championships and the Australian Junior Beach Volleyball Championships, more than 1,500 people are expected to descend on Koombana Bay from the 21st to 29th of April.
The crown jewel of the nine day event will be the Australian Junior Beach Volleyball Championships with an incredible 123 teams confirmed to play across the four day competition.
“We are beyond thrilled to welcome so many athletes to WA and host such a high calibre Volleyball event in WA’s south west.“ Volleyball WA Chief Executive Robyn Kuhl said.
“The wave of support Australia has shown for Beach Volleyball following the Commonwealth Games will be on full display in Bunbury. The success of our Australian teams at the Gold Coast games will undoubtedly inspire the next generation to give their best performances at Koombana Bay. ”
The record breaking number of teams surpasses last year’s event in Scarborough by more than 25 teams and will see Western Australia field 28 teams as it looks to secure the overall Andy Burdin Shield from 2017 winners Queensland.
“The record number of entrants for the Australian Junior Beach Volleyball Championships is a testament to Volleyball’s growing profile in Australian sport. “ President of Volleyball Australia Craig Carracher said.
“The increasing interest and participation of school aged athletes in Volleyball is an incredible milestone in the sport’s development. Volley by the Bay will be a celebration of this achievement and coming off the success of the Beach Volleyball competition at the Commonwealth Games, it will be a party fans don’t want to miss.”
Volley by the Bay will also see the nation’s best U23 Beach Volleyball players battle it out in Bunbury. WA’s Greg Hunt and Maksim Bacovic will be going for gold after collecting bronze at last year’s event. As the only returning U23 medallists, Hunt and Bacovic will lead the field from Queensland’s Mark Nicolaidis, James Taken, Bradley Sting and Mitchell Field. Nicolaidis and Sting will be looking to step up to the new age group after winning the Australian U19 title in 2017.
The women’s Australian U23 Beach Volleyball Championship is wide open with a whole new crop of players set to challenge for the title. Australian U19 medalists from 2017 will be the ones to watch with teams from Queensland and Western Austral once again set to lead the field.
Before the Australian events get underway, the Alcohol. Think Again WA Beach tour will get things started with WA’s top Open beach volleyballers going head to head in wet and windy conditions. Ready to face the test in the Women’s competition will be WA’s Australian U23 medal hopefuls Waverly Burling and Olivia Stewart. Burling and Stewart have already collected two wins on the 2018 tour with strong performances at Palm Beach, Rockingham and Middleton Beach, Albany.
The men’s competition is certain to heat things up with the top three seeded teams having collected a win on the 2018 tour. Cameron Dall and Brett Lewington take the top seed, however they will be tested by the likes of WA Open semi-finalists Sam Kingston and Jonathan Hunt, as well as Greg Hunt and Maksim Bacovic.
Live results will be available for the entire event and the finals of the Australian U23 and Junior Beach Volleyball Championships will be live streamed on Volleyball WA’s Facebook page.
Volley by the Bay will also offer a range of Community Events and Education Forums open to all members of the public. Regardless of individual’s volleyball experience, these events have been designed to help engage Volleyball to fans old and new.
Head HERE to find out more about Volley by the Bay.