CEV unveils 2014 Beach Volleyball calendar
The major highlight will be the European Championship Final scheduled for June 3-8 in Rome; once more the sports complex known as Foro Italico will be playing host to a major Beach Volleyball tournament after the FIVB World Tour regularly stopped there for the past few years and that same venue hosted the FIVB Beach Volleyball World Championship in 2011.
The inaugural CEV Youth Continental Cup will also draw to a close next year with the final stage taking place in Antalya, Turkey, through May 23-25. Out of eighteen teams per gender participating in the finals, the top six will book their ticket to the 2014 Youth Olympic Games in Nanjing where Beach Volleyball will debut on the program. The event will be held at the Beach Volleyball Development Centre set up by the Turkish Volleyball Federation in Antalya, a city which is known for being one of the most sought-after holiday destinations of the Mediterranean Sea.
The program for 2014 also includes four Masters starting with the double gender event in Baden, Austria, scheduled for May 28-June 1 to continue with the Novi Sad Masters through July 2-6 as Serbia’s second largest city will once more host a good share of Europe’s men’s Beach Volleyball elite.
Two additional tournaments were added to the program of the European Championship, with the Swiss city of Biel/Bienne and Baku, Azerbaijan, going for a rehearsal as they get ready to host the 2016 European Championship Final and the 2015 European Games respectively. The Masters in Biel/Bienne will run through August 6-10 while the Baku Masters will round out the program of the European Championship from September 10-14.
On top of this, the CEV portfolio also includes the 1st and 2nd round of the Continental Cup whereby teams from 44 countries – out of 55 CEV members – will start their quest to make it to the 2016 Olympics in Rio de Janeiro.
The age-group Championships will be taking place in Kristiansand (Norway, U18), Cesenatico (Italy, U20) and in Antalya (TUR, U22). Kristiansand returns in the spotlight after hosting the 2011 European Championship Final while Antalya will follow up on the Youth Continental Cup finals with another international event where Europe’s up-and-coming stars will be in action. As for Cesenatico, the Italian seaside resort did never host any such tournament before but is a regular stop in the national tour and with their winning bid made sure the U20 European Championship will be held in Italy for the third time after San Salvo and Catania hosted the 2008 and 2010 editions respectively.
The 2014 calendar – many more tournaments may follow especially via the addition of the so-called Zonal events – also includes four Satellites; after the indoor season opener in Anapa, Montpellier (France), Lausanne (Switzerland) and Vaduz (Liechtenstein) are all going to continue with their respective success story. Montpellier and Vaduz will be hosting double gender events while the participation to the tournament in Lausanne is – as in the past – open only to men’s pairs.
“We are evidently pleased with the wide range of events we have put together for 2014” CEV President André Meyer says. “Beach Volleyball in Europe has gone through a terrific development in recent times and the calendar for 2014 is just the continuation of that trend. I would like to thank all those – National Federations and promoters – who have come forward and showed their interest in hosting a Beach Volleyball tournament. I am convinced that this is just the onset of another memorable season.”