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XLII CEV General Assembly – President Boričić hails progress in growing European Volleyball at all levels

The representatives of as many as 51 National Federations – with another four represented by proxy – came together on Saturday in Katowice for the XLII CEV General Assembly. It was a very much-needed and refreshing opportunity to come together after the whole world has been navigating difficult times, thus reviewing the latest achievements of Europe’s Volleyball family and setting the tone for the exciting months and years ahead.

CEV President Aleksandar Boričić expressed his pride for the CEV responded swiftly to the challenges brought about by the coronavirus pandemic – and with an unprecedented investment aimed at supporting all members and stakeholders deal with such difficult circumstances.

“The global health crisis has confronted us with major challenges, but I am very proud of the way we responded as the first European sports institution to do so. Our main goal was initially to survive, but we have done much more than just that, re-starting competitions and activities as soon as it was safe for everyone involved and with strict protocols in place.”

Aleksandar Boričić
CEV President

The last 12 months since last year’s General Assembly in Vienna have included major sporting highlights, such as the Champions League Super Finals, the Continental Cup Final, EuroBeachVolley, and the EuroVolley competition held across as many as eight countries.

The CEV President emphasised the need to be ready to take up challenges and continue to innovate.

The agenda for the coming months includes work on marketing rights, actions to grow Beach and Snow Volleyball even further as well as to involve more and more youngsters into Volleyball with the help of the Zonal Associations and an extensive use of digital tools / social media channels.

What emerged from all of today’s presentations and speeches is that European Volleyball has become a benchmark of quality, innovation and readiness to continue to evolve with the times.

“As I thank all of our stakeholders and members of our Volleyball family, I wish to continue an open exchange of views and continuous communication flow. You shall not be afraid of any challenges or of making mistakes. Let us continue to work together like members of the same team in order to take Volleyball to the next level,” the CEV President said.

Iceland triumph at SCA U19 Women’s Championship on home soil

The home favourites of Iceland claimed on Sunday the Small Countries Division (SCA) U19 women’s title following a dramatic 3-2 victory (26-24, 17-25, 25-20, 18-25, 15-10) in the last matchup of the tournament where they beat the Faroe Islands. The match lasted for 141 minutes to cap an event that has coincided with the return of international Volleyball competition for the Small Countries after a long break due to the coronavirus pandemic.

Team Iceland celebrate their triumph on home soil

Earlier in the afternoon, Malta beat Gibraltar 3-0 (25-18, 27-25, 25-8) in a match between two still winless teams – to claim the bronze medals.

Final standing

  1. Iceland
  2. Faroe Islands
  3. Malta
  4. Gibraltar

Faroe Islands and Iceland to lock horns for SCA women’s U19 title

The hosts from Iceland do not seem to leave any chance to their opponents at the Small Countries Division (SCA) U19 Women’s Championship that they are contesting on home soil.

The Faroese team will play Iceland on Sunday for the gold medal at the SCA U19 Women’s Championship

On Saturday, the home side stormed to a comprehensive 3-0 victory (25-12, 25-15, 25-10) in their match-up with Malta to keep an immaculate record in the competition. They will finish their duties on Sunday when they take on their Nordic neighbours from the Faroe Islands – who on Saturday thumped rookies Gibraltar 3-0 as well (25-0, 25-7, 25-3).

With Iceland and the Faroe Islands yet to drop a single set in the competition, Sunday’s fixture will determine the eventual winners of the SCA title.

Live streaming of the matches is available on the YouTube channel of the Icelandic Volleyball Federation here.  

Iceland welcomes back SCA Volleyball competition with U19 women’s championship

After a long break due to the coronavirus pandemic, international Volleyball competition has eventually returned for the members of the Small Countries Division (SCA) as well, with Iceland playing host this weekend to the U19 Women’s Championship with participation of the national teams of Faroe Islands, Gibraltar, Iceland, and Malta.  

Team Iceland are contesting the SCA U19 women’s championship on home soil

The event is taking place at Laugarvatn and runs from September 3-5, 2021. A Volleyball team from Gibraltar has travelled to Iceland for the very first time, whereas Malta have returned to contest an SCA championship after a very long time away from the scenes. These facts are all testament to the efforts made to revitalise activities across the Small Countries despite the challenges still brought about by the global health crisis.

As the competition started on Friday, the hosts needed 53 minutes only to seal a 3-0 victory over Gibraltar (25-4, 25-9, 25-5), before the Faroe Islands thumped Malta in straight sets as well (25-8, 25-7, 25-7).

Record-breaking numbers for second camp run by Icelandic Volleyball Association

Two weeks after the official kick-off event held in the area of the country’s capital city (see here), the Icelandic Volleyball Federation (BLI) delivered a second camp run in conjunction with the CEV School Project – this time in the northern section of the country.

Kids and teachers attended the camp run by the BLI in Akureyri

The organisers from KA in Akureyri welcomed as many as 80 kids, 20 coaches and 20 physical education teachers to the second regional camp. Borja Gonzalez Vicente, the Spanish-born coach of the Icelandic women’s national team, delivered a three-hour course to help teachers prepare their students for the upcoming school events, which the Icelandic Volleyball Federation will deliver in October in 12 different locations across the country.

The objective is to connect the local clubs with the schools. The last two events showed that this strategy is likely to pay dividends.

This coming October, the BLI will host as many as 12 school events with participation of more than 10,000 kids aged from nine to 12.

“We want to create a sustainable system for our wonderful sport. BLI has the chance now to motivate nearly every student aged between 9 and 12. It is a great opportunity for us and after such a promising start, we are convinced that this can help us grow the sport at all levels, from the grassroots to high performance. We are very excited!”

Burkhard Disch
BLI High Performance Manager

Additionally to this second camp, the U19 women’s national team prepared in Husavik for the Nordic Cup (SCA U19 Championship). This tournament will be taking place next week in Iceland with the hosts joined by the national teams of the Faroe Islands, Gibraltar, and Malta.

Icelandic Volleyball Federation kick-starts School Project

This past week, the Icelandic Volleyball Federation (BLI) officially kick-started the implementation of the CEV School Volleyball Project in their country through the delivery of a talent camp and a conference open to physical education teachers.

More than 130 kids joined the camp organised by the Icelandic Volleyball Federation this past week.

The conference took place at the Varma Sports Centre, with participation of 28 teachers from the Reykjavik area and lectures provided by Burkhard Disch and Borja Vicente Gonzalez. The coaches of the Icelandic men’s and women’s national teams shared their experience on how to teach Volleyball to school pupils. The session included a number of drills as well, thus keeping the teachers busy for more than three hours.

The participants received all the information needed to prepare their classes for a large-scale School Volleyball competition, which is due to take place this coming October. The Icelandic Volleyball Federation will run 12 events in different regions of the country, thus involving more than 10,000 students from about 100 primary schools.

“It was great to see how active the teachers were. We are convinced that the content of the course will help them bring Volleyball in the right way to their students. We are excited to see the kids playing in our upcoming big events.”

Elsa Gunnarsdóttir
Project Manager

The activities run at Varma sports complex included a clinic specifically designed for physical education teachers

The activities included a camp with more than 130 kids, divided into two groups to comply with COVID-19 protocols. As many as 90 young talents trained with the BLI coaches, with six different levels defined depending on the skills and abilities of the children. In another hall within the same complex, 30 U-19 athletes practiced under the supervision of BLI coaches as well.

Burkhard Disch, High Performance Manager at the Icelandic Volleyball Federation: “It is great to see kids again in the gym. After the long break due to the pandemic, we are all happy to be back on the court. What we can take from these three days is that we have a lot of talented players in Iceland. The target is now to develop these players step by step. BLI has devised a regional development strategy, and we are convinced that we can increase both the number and the quality of young players. The school project in cooperation with the local clubs and the relevant follow-up will be the key to succeed. For this weekend we can be very happy to see the smiles back on the faces of so many young players.”

In two weeks, BLI will organise another camp including a workshop for coaches and physical education teachers as well. This will be taking place in Akureyri, in the north of the country.

The kids had a great deal of fun with the camp run this past week by the Icelandic Volleyball Federation

SCA Edinburgh 2021 – Day 3

The sun was shining on the final day at the Small Countries Association Edinburgh 2021 at Liberton High School. With a busy schedule of quarterfinals, semi-finals and finals, matches began at 9:00am with the remaining two men’s quarterfinal matches. Stewart and McKelvie (SCO) took on a strong Northern Irish pairing, ultimately coming out as victors with a 2-0 win over Stewart and Scott (NIR). The next match saw Fraser and Mexson (SCO) push Ferry and Ferry (MON) to the limit, with the last set reaching 26-24 before Ferry and Ferry managed the 2-0 win.

Moving to the women’s semi-finals, up first was Morrison and Barbour (SCO), winning 2-0 against Gretarsdottir and Vigfusdottir (ISL) in tight sets. Einarsdottir and Jónsdóttir (ISL) also won in 2-0 sets against England’s Keefe and Tucker. The sun stuck around for the men’s semi-finals, with Kostler and Klaffinger (AUT) bringing the heat against McGuigan and Riddle (SCO) in their 2-0 win. Stewart and McKelvie (SCO) were back on court for their semi-final match against the Ferry brothers, just missing out on the win 2-0.

With 4 matches left in the day, it was all hands on deck for the next to bronze medal matches. Keefe/Tucker (ENG) brought all they could against Gretarsdottir/Vigfusdottir (ISL), but the Icelandic team played strong and managed the 2-1 win for 3rd place. In the men’s side it was Scotland v Scotland, with heated words being exchanged between the two teams before McGuigan and Riddle scored the win 2-0.

Finally, the finals! The women’s final was first up, with Scotland’s Morrison and Barbour (SCO) facing a strong Icelandic duo in Einarsdottir and Jonsdottir (ISL). Both teams played incredibly well, with Einarsdottir and Jonsdottir (ISL) taking the well deserved win 2-0. The men’s match saw Austrian wild cards Kostler and Klaffinger (AUT) up against Ferry and Ferry (MON). With other nation’s teams watching the match, Kostler and Klaffinger (AUT) brought the win home in a 2-0 competition.

Scottish Volleyball CEO Margaret Ann Fleming presented each team with their trophies from a distance. We as an association would like to take this moment to thank all teams and their associations for taking part in this zonal event. In addition, a big thank you goes out to all the staff and volunteers for their help in running this event so smoothly.

SCA Edinburgh 2021 – Day 2

Day 2 started with a bang today, with pool play continuing throughout the morning. Neill and Park (NIR) were up first with our 2nd three set match of the competition, just losing out on the win against Fraser/Mexson (SCO). Dropping the net height we moved to some women’s matches, with Beattie and Coutts comfortably winning 2-0 against Ranklin and Baillie (SCO). Einarsdottir and Jónsdóttir’s (ISL) match followed in a similar way, also winning 2-0 against Blair and Harris (SCO). Waldie and Gillies’ match had a brief interruption with a medical timeout, but after athletes were checked out, the game finished with a 2-0 win for Keefe and Tucker (ENG). The women’s pool matches finished with Morrison and Barbour’s 2-0 win over their Northern Irish opponents Scott and Montgomery.

The Ferry brothers started off the men’s matches, with a 2-0 win over Robb and McCaughern (NIR). Wild card Kostler and Klaffinger (AUT) continued their win streak with a 2-0 over Whiteside and Workman (NIR). Another Scotland against Scotland match was up next, with Boyle and Caldwell (SCO) coming out top with a 2-0 win over Scott and McKelvie (SCO). Stewart and Scott (NIR) finished off the men’s pool play, providing an exciting 2-1 win over their Northern Irish counterparts Neill and Park (NIR).

A three set thriller was up next, with Gretarsdottir and Vigfusdottir (ISL) upsetting home team Beattie and Coutts (SCO) with a 2-1 win. Morrison and Barbour (SCO) quickly dispatched Ford and Holmes (NIR) 2-0, with Keefe and Tucker beating Wales’s Ionascu and Skidmore (WAL) 2-0 shortly after. Einarsdottir and Jónsdóttir (ISL) finished off the women’s quarter finals with a 2-0 win over Scotland’s McLean and Fowler (SCO).

The last two matches of the day were the first of the men’s quarter-final matches. Making it three for three, Kostler and Klaffinger (AUT) won 2-0 against Devey and Robins (WAL). Finishing off the day was a classic Scotland versus Scotland, with McGuigan and Riddle ending on a high with a 2-0 win against the McHardy brothers.

Tomorrow sees the completion of the men’s quarter finals, before moving on the semi-finals and eventually the finals! Make sure to watch out for the live streams on Scottish Volleyball’s facebook page.

SCA Edinburgh 2021 – Day 1

Day one of the Small Countries Association Edinburgh 2021 International Beach Competition concluded yesterday, with all 15 matches being played over the course of 11 hours.

Starting with seeds number 1, Beattie and Coutts (SCO) played strongly against Northern Ireland’s Ford and Holmes, winning the match 2-0. Quickly followed by an all Iceland affair, Einarsdottir and Jonsdottir made quick work of their opponents, also winning the match 2-0. A classic Scotland v England match followed, with England’s Keefe and Tucker winning against McLean and Fowler 2-0. Scotland and Wales finished off the women’s morning matches, with Morrison and Barbour (SCO) beating Ionascu and Skidmore (WAL) 2-0.

After a quick net change, the men’s matches started off with Monaco’s brother duo of Ferry and Ferry taking on Wales’ Devey and Robins (WAL). Close points resulted in a 2-0 win for the Monaco pairing. Next up was the only Austrian team in the competition, with Kostler and Klaffinger comfortably beating Scotland’s McGuigan and Riddle. Next on the courts was two of the five Scottish men’s teams entered in the competition. Arguably the loudest match of the day, Stewart and McKelvie (SCO) won 2-0 against another brother duo in McHardy and McHardy (SCO). Finishing off the first men’s session of the day was Stewart and Scott (NIR) against Fraser and Mexson (SCO), with the Northern Irish team finishing the battle 2-0.

Back to the women’s matches and the sun was still shining! In their second match of the day Ford and Holmes (NIR) beat Ranklin and Bailie (SCO) 2-1, while Gretarsdottir and Vigfusdottir (ISL) beat Blair and Harris (SCO) 2-0. Waldie and Gillies (SCO) pushed McLean and Fowler (SCO) to the limit, but the elder Scotland team recovered with a 2-1 win. Ionascu and Skidmore (WAL) ended the women’s matches with a 2-0 over Scott/Montgomery (NIR)

Three matches left and we’re back to the men’s teams. Devey and Robins (WAL) won 2-0 against Northern Ireland’s Robb and McCaughern. An experienced McGuigan and Riddle (SCO) won 2-0 against Whiteside and Workman (NIR) as the day drew to a close. The final match of the day saw another all-Scottish match up, with the McHardy duo bringing home the 2-0 win against Boyle and Caldwell (SCO).

VolleyballPhotos spent the day with us at the event, and you can purchase original, unwatermarked pictures from their website: https://www.volleyballphotos.co.uk/

Tomorrow sees teams back at 9:00am for another day on the beach. Facebook will again stream all matches live, which you can find on our Facebook page.

SCA Event Preparation and Draw

Preparation for the Small Countries Association Edinburgh 2021 International Beach Volleyball competition was completed today, with staff and volunteers spending the day building and decorating the court.

With all teams, officials and staff having arrived safely in Scotland and teams completing their preliminary enquiries, the draw for the competition was determined this evening. This can be viewed at the following link: https://www-old.cev.eu/beach/Edinburgh.html

Live streaming of matches will commence at 09:00 tomorrow (4th) and will be shown on the Scottish Volleyball Facebook page, which can be found at the following link: https://www.facebook.com/scottishvolleyball

Good luck to all teams who are competing this weekend!