The Bermuda Volleyball Association will welcome the news that Beach Volleyball will make its debut on the Commonwealth Games programme at Gold Coast 2018, it has been announced.
The historic move will increase the number of sports being contested at the Games from 17 to 18 for the first time, making use of what have been described as some of the best beaches in the world at the Australian venue.
An agreement was struck between the Commonwealth Games Federation (CGF), the Queensland Government, the Australian Commonwealth Games Association (ACGA) and the Gold Coast 2018 Commonwealth Games Corporation (GOLDOC) to pave the way for Beach Volleyball’s inclusion.
Two 12 team tournaments will be contested, one each for men and women, with two players per team.
A qualification system will be developed in collaboration with the International Volleyball Federation (FIVB) and will be finalized by July.
“The CGF Executive Board is delighted to approve the inclusion of beach volleyball in the sports program of the XXI Commonwealth Games, which will allow nations to compete in more sports, engage and inspire spectators, broadcasters and commercial partners, and create a spectacular sporting showcase for the Gold Coast, Queensland and Australia on the world stage,” said CGF President Louise Martin.
“This innovative, collaborative initiative, undertaken and initiated by the Gold Coast 2018 delivery partners with support from the CGF, is a fantastic example of the collective ambitions set out in the CGF’s Transformation 2022 strategic plan and we look forward to experiencing beach volleyball for the first time ever at a Commonwealth Games.”
Beach volleyball is expected to be a stand-out sport at August’s Rio Olympics, due to the famous Copacabana venue, and the sport could be similarly iconic in Gold Coast.
In February 2014, GOLDOC had announced that no additional sports would be added to the programme but that position has now clearly changed.
“This announcement is a great outcome that will only add to what is already an exciting program,” GOLDOC Chairman Nigel Chamier said.
“The people of the Gold Coast, Queensland and Australia can expect amazing venues, incredible sport and a lifetime of memories.”
A location for the beach volleyball will now be “scouted” with a pleasing on the eye venue which also has enough room for the necessary infrastructure required.
“The Gold Coast has some of the best beaches in the world, which is why we have campaigned strongly to the Commonwealth Games Federation to include beach volleyball as part of the sporting programme in 2018,” said Australia’s Commonwealth Games Minister Stirling Hinchcliffe.
ACGA President, Sam Coffa, added, “Beach Volleyball is a perfect addition to the 2018 programme.
“We know it’s popular throughout the Commonwealth, particularly with our neighbors in the Pacific.”
The other sports in Gold Coast will be athletics, aquatics, badminton, basketball, boxing, cycling, gymnastics, hockey, lawn bowls, netball, rugby sevens, shooting, squash, table tennis, triathlon, weightlifting and wrestling.
An integrated Para-sports schedule will be announced later this month, with the Games taking place between April 4th and 15th.