Beach Volleyball - Sunday 13 January

Beach Volleyball Sunday 13 January, 12.00 – 5.30pm

TV2 brings you one of the entertainment highlights of New Zealand’s summer sporting calendar, with LIVE coverage of the finals day in the McEntee Hire Beach Volleyball Tour 2008 from Oriental Bay in Wellington.

The McEntee Hire Beach Volleyball Tour 2008 showcases the game at its highest level as international players go head-to-head with local talent. The Beach Volleyball Tour has been a feature of New Zealand’s summer sporting calendar for over a decade now, entertaining crowds at five North Island’s summer hotspots with great action and athleticism.
The Tour leads into the McEntee Hire New Zealand Open, next Sunday 20 January, which will also be broadcast LIVE on TV2 from the ASB Centre in Stanley Street. This tournament brings the beach to central Auckland, importing 100 cubic metres of sand to transform the stadium’s centre court into an ideal beach volleyball surface.

The Beach Volleyball season features high quality international teams and top local talent. Heading the international women’s line-up for 2008 are the Brazilian team of Camilla Dos Reis Saldanha and Liliane Maestrini – who are firm crowd favourites. This top duo will start the tour as the ‘team to beat’, after medals at world championships and strong performances on the tough Brazilian Tour in 2007. Other international teams to watch include the USA pairing of Paige Davis and Jenelle Koester, and the young Swedish team of Nilsson and Oliveira.

Local interest will focus on former Silver Fern Anna Scarlett and her partner Susan Blundell, who had an outstanding debut as a team in 2007, finishing as the No. 1 New Zealand team in what was their first outing. With Anna Scarlett standing at 1.87m and Susan Blundell even taller at 1.89m, they are the tallest female team of the tour, making them a difficult combination to face. Scarlett recently resigned from netball at all levels to focus on Beach Volleyball with the goal of competing in the 2012 London Olympics.

The men’s field has several strong international teams, and some exciting, Kiwi combinations. New Zealanders Kirk Pitman and Jason Lochhead will continue their quest to represent the country in at the Bejing Olympics in August. Currently sitting at 33rd in the overall World Ranking and 27th on the Olympic Ranking, after excellent performances throughout the International season, their goal is to gain one of the 24 Olympic places. They can expect tough international competition from USA team of Paul Baxter and Adam Roberts, and the Dutch team Bart Bolsterlee and Timko Lokerse, the tallest team of the 2008 tour.

Beach Volleyball is hosted by Jenny-May Coffin, with commentary from Brendon Ward and Craig Seuseu; don’t miss all the action on TV2 this Sunday 13 January, 12.00 – 5.30pm.

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