Quebec, Canada, April 7, 2011 – Canadian beach volleyball stars Anne Martin, Chaim Schalk and Martin Reader have all voiced their enthusiasm at the prospect of playing in front of their home crowd when the FIVB Beach Volleyball Swatch World Tour 2011 rolls into Quebec in July.
The double-gender event is the first to take place in Canada since 2007 and will be held on the fields of l’Externat St-Jean Berchmans and Seminaire des Peres Maristes in the borough of Sillery.
"I'm really happy that the Swatch World Tour is hosting an event in Quebec," said Martin, who partners Marie-Andree Lessard. "A home event is meaningful for the Canadian athletes participating in it. I can't wait for July, to have an event like this.
"It's rare that we have a chance to play in front of our family and friends. It will be an advantage to be able to count on the home-town crowd. The atmosphere will be extraordinary, and I am convinced that all the players on the tour will have a wonderful experience and will want to come back year after year."
"Having an FIVB event on home soil will be a crucial part of the Olympic qualification process," Schalk added. "To play in front of our home fans will be huge for us. We can't wait to represent our country in Quebec City."
"It is integral for Canada's development in beach volleyball to host an international competition," Schalk’s partner, Reader, said. "Not only does it assist our nation's athletes in improving their world ranking, it will catalyse the growth of our sport and offer invaluable marketing opportunities."
The last FIVB event to take place in Canada was the Montreal Open in 2007 when USA's Kerri Walsh and Misty May-Treanor won the women's event and Brazil's Emanuel Rego and Ricardo Santos prevailed in the men's. This year's event, taking place from July 19-24, marks the first time an FIVB tournament will be held in Quebec.
"The city of Quebec is honoured to have the opportunity to host this grand international event," the president of the tournament, Mr Claude Rousseau, said. "I would like to thank the authorities of the city of Quebec, our governments as well as our two main sponsors, Jeep and Videotron, without whom the presentation of this event would not be made possible. I believe that this is an event which will greatly appeal to the people of the city of Quebec and attract people from across the province."
"The FIVB is extremely proud that the 23rd edition of the FIVB Beach Volleyball Swatch World Tour will feature Quebec for the first time," FIVB President Mr Jizhong Wei added. "The announcement of Quebec as a host city reflects the exceptional growth and popularity of the World Tour as it extends its reach to all corners of the globe."