Lausanne , Switzerland, January 19, 2020 - After gold medal wins for Iranian and New Zealand pairs at the last two events, the FIVB Beach Volleyball World Tour will take a break for two weeks before resuming action in Cambodia where the Southeast Asia country will host men's and women's tournaments in February.
Quick links - Beach volleyball:Instagram
The first women's World Tour event of the 2020 calendar year is set for February 6-9 at Siem Reap followed by the next men's FIVB tournament from February 20-23 at Phnom Penh. The two events mark the third-straight season that Cambodia has hosted FIVB World Tour gatherings.
The first Cambodian tournament is part of the Anchor Beach Volleyball Carnival as Siem Reap hosted a men's-only event in 2019 where Austrians Christoph Dressler and Alexander Huber topped the podium by defeating Russians Maxim Sivolap and Artem Yarzutkin in the finals.
Phnom Penh has hosted women's events the past two seasons where pairs from Germany (Anna Behlen/Sarah Schneider) and Greece (Vasiliki Arvaniti/Penny Karagkouni) captured the gold medals by defeating tandems from Japan and the United States, respectively, in the finals.
The best finishes for a Cambodian women's team on home sand are 13ths by Samrith Jeudi/San Soma and Oeur Kunthea/Leap Sara in April 2019 at Battambang. The men's best placements for Cambodian pairs in the Asian country were also 13ths at Kampong Speu by Phoun Borey/Sea Kosal and Samith Sam/Khlork Sim in March 2019.
In last week's FIVB event in the South Pacific, New Zealand's Griffin Muller and Sam O'Dea posted a pair of wins over teams from the United States on Friday to capture the gold medal at the inaugural VolleyFest Cook Islands for their country's first-ever men's or women's gold medal on the World Tour.
Cook Islands, Rarotonga, January 14-17, US$5,000, FIVB men's event No. 465
1. Griffin Muller/Sam O'Dea, New Zealand, $1,00
2. Christopher Austin/Earl Schultz, United States, $700
3. Travis Mewhirter/Adam Roberts, United States, $500
4. Hitoshi Murakami/Takashi Tsuchiya, Japan $400
Gold - Muller/O'Dea def. Austin/Schultz, 21-14, 20-22, 15-7 (52 minutes)
Bronze - Mewhirter/Roberts def. Murakami/Tsuchiya, 21-18, 22-20 (43)
The VolleyFest Cook Islands podium featured (left to right) Christopher Austin, Earl Schultz, Sam O'Dea, Griffin Muller, Travis Mewhirter and Adam Roberts.
The Cambodian events are the only February tournaments on the 2019-2020 FIVB World Tour calendar. March's schedule features four double gender events (Malaysia in Langkawi from March 12 to 15; Australia in Coolangatta from March 18-22; Mexico at Cancun from March 25-29 and the Philippines at Boracay from March 26-29), two men's stops in Iran (March 3-7 at Bandar Abbas) and Qatar (March 12-15 at Doha) and a women's tournament in Guam (March 5-8).