Australian player Christopher McHugh takes a selfie with Shepparton volunteers in 2017
Shepparton, Australia, January 11, 2018 – The FIVB Beach Volleyball World Tour heads to Australia next, with the city of Shepparton preparing to host a one-star event at the beginning of February.
Teams from 17 different countries have signed up to compete in Shepparton from February 1 through 4, at a tournament which is expected to attract extensive national and international TV and media exposure.
In 2017 the country played host to three World Tour stops, one in Shepparton and two in Sydney. For the Australian participants, the events are also part of their preparations to host the Commonwealth Games in April, which will mark the historic debut of the sport of beach volleyball at the Games.
A 500-seat grandstand will be erected at the Victoria Park Lake precinct in Shepparton to accommodate fans. The temporary purpose-built stadium will feature two competition courts and a warm-up court. A Beach Carnival will be organised alongside the tournament from Friday afternoon through to Sunday afternoon.
Party atmosphere at the Shepparton event in 2017
This carnival will feature food trucks, bars, live music, and a kids event with free and low-cost activities at Victoria Park Lake and Aquamoves.
“It does sound like a big party,” exclaimed Australia’s up-and-coming beach volleyball star Mariafe Artacho Del Solar, a 2014 U23 world champion and gold medallist at the Sydney World Tour event in November, during her interview on The Ultimate Wrap podcast
. “It is going to be right in the middle of the city. In February it should still be pretty warm. Last year we played in March and it was actually very hot. With so many international players coming to Australia it will be really exciting to see where the sport is heading.”
To get everybody into the spirit of the event in Shepparton, the organizers are offering free admission to the venue on Thursday, Friday and Saturday. Tickets for the finals on Sunday are already available, but as the numbers are limited the organizers are urging people to “get in quick to avoid missing out.”
For more information on how to get tickets, visit the Volleyball Australia website.