Volleyball’s back

Beach volleyball on the South Beach

Beach volleyball on the South Beach

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BRIDLINGTON’S South Beach is once again set to host the town’s annual Open Beach Volleyball Championship this weekend, which provides a great opportunity to catch this action-packed Olympic sport.

The event, which is sponsored by East Yorkshire Events and Leeds Volleyball Club, is celebrating its 29th year and has grown from humble beginnings to a major event in the beach volleyball calendar.

In the year before the Olympics it is a great way for anyone to get a real introduction to one of the most popular, fastest growing and colourful sports to be played at the London games in 2012.

This year the event organisers are expecting nearly 80 teams from up and down the UK and even further afield to compete over two days competition where the emphasis is to have fun playing a great sport in a great location.

Kieran Lawry, from East Yorkshire Events, said: “The Bridlington Open Beach Volleyball fits in perfectly with our branding of Bridlington as ‘The Resort for Sport’, with volleyball being held just a week before Bridlington hosts the UKWA National Windsurfing Championships.”

The influx of around 500 people into the resort for a long weekend provides a boost for local tourism businesses and also adds great value for residents and visitors alike, offering the perfect opportunity to watch live sport for free while enjoying a fantastic day out at the seaside.”

The tournament spans two days, Saturday and Sunday, and is located close to the Bridlington Park and Ride facility at South Shore Beach, Bridlington.

As well as the usual four-a-side and two-a-side competitions for juniors and seniors, the event organisers are this year working with the Yorkshire branches of the Civil Service Recreation Association to help establish beach volleyball as part of their sporting calendar.

Civil servants who may be new to the sport are being encouraged to play for a place in an international finals event to be held in the Caribbean.

With Volleyball England striving to get more new people playing the sport it is great news that the Bridlington event will see growing participation from a whole new set of players.

The event’s organiser, former international player Dave Speers, has the proud claim to have played in every Bridlington tournament since 1983.

He stressed that without the support of the players, helpers, Makis Leisure, South Cliff Caravan Park, South Beach Cafe and the East Yorkshire Events the tournament would not be the success it is today.

His keen eye for innovation means that this year he has embraced the latest computer technology for the organisation and recording of all matches and has been working on a number of apps.

More details can be found on the tournament website: www.bridbeach.co.uk