Yesterday, the Qualification for the first Beach Pro Tour organized by the newly formed Volleyball World has set the Beach Volleyball season in motion. In Tlaxcala, Mexico, most of the world’s elite players are gathered for a Beach Pro Tour Challenge, the next highest level of an event following only the Elite 16.

From the Middle European teams only four will actually take part in the event. Besides the typical few last minute withdrawals, the most part of the men’s Austrian delegation had to stay home due to the Covid-19 safety protocol. Therefore next to the best Austrian women’s teams of the last decade Kathi Schützenhöfer/Lena Plesiutschnig, also the Corinthia duo Christoph Dressler/Xandi Huber will both start today directly in the Main Draw.

Both Czech teams had to start in the qualification and it was with a mixed success. Bara Hermannova/Marie-Sara Stochlova as a second seed of the qualification got a bye in the first round and were better from the second Australian team Nikki Laird/Phoebe Bell in straight sets and joined Kathi and Lena in the main draw. 

Jakub Sepka/Tomas Semerad had a tough first round draw and were stopped by the Brazilian beach volleyball legend Pedro Solberg and his partner Arthur. 

All the matches can be watched live on VolleyballWorldTV! They are also offering a 30-day free-trial.  

Following the Challenge in Tlaxcala, the caravan will be moving to Rosarito for the first Elite 16 event between March 23-27. Starting there will also be the Czech top team Ondrej Perusic/David Schweiner and the Austrian Robin Seidl/Philipp Waller. 

After the previous Tokyo Olympics season, FIVB together with their new partners formed VolleyballWorld, a new company that is responsible for the Beach Pro Tour. Immediately the decision was made to go away from the previous Star-system and transition to a new event structure, which includes three different levels, the highest being Elite 16, followed by the Challenge and the entry-level Futures.

Schedule & Results
Main Draw (local time
17-Mar  15:30 (22:30)  Dressler/Huber, A. (AUT) – Nõlvak/Tiisaar (EST)
17-Mar  12:30 (19:30)  Borger/Sude (GER) – Hermannova/Stochlova (CZE)
17-Mar  11:30 (18:30)  Hughes/Kolinske (USA) – Schützenhöfer/Plesiutschnig (AUT)

Qualification
Laird/Bell (AUS) – Hermannova/Stochlova (CZE)  0-2 (10-21, 16-21)
Sepka/Semerad (CZE) – Arthur/Pedro Solberg (BRA)  0-2 (17-21, 14-21)

News:
VolleyballWorld
ÖVV – Volleyball Austria
CVF – Czech Volleyball