Top clubs set for battle

FIJI is the first country in the region to host the Oceania Club Volleyball Championship that opened yesterday.

Events co-ordinator James Summers says this is all part of the sports development at national level and the importance of youth participation in the Oceania region

“Having this event here is quite essential. We have 14 teams in total, majority are from Fiji and Tuvalu. We want to make this an annual event, having Fiji to host it again because it is accessible, cheap and possible for our athletes to participate,” Summers said.

“Fiji is the defending Oceania national team champion for the men and women’s team so what we will see here today (yesterday) is all the national team players playing in matches.

“We want to have an international standard competition where we’ll see the nine men’s teams and five women’s teams battle it out for the top positions.”

Summers said both winners would qualify for the Asian Club championship this year.

“Winners from the men and women’s final will qualify for the Asian Club championship which is in Kazakhstan where they will meet top clubs from Japan, Korea, Australia and Iran.

He said the winner from the Asian championship would compete in the World Club games.

“It is a big step up in achieving international goals. It is all about participation and competition.”

The hosting of the championship cost about $100,000 which is an investment, he said.

The three-day event is hosted at the newly-renovated FMF Gymnasium.

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