Lausanne, Switzerland, November 30, 2016 - After a five year absence, the FIVB Beach Volleyball World Tour returns to Morocco from July 21-23 for the double-gender FIVB Agadir Beach 1-Star Open. The Agadir Beach event will mark just the second time for a men’s competition in Morocco and first women’s FIVB international tournament in the country.
Casablanca has hosted three FIVB Satellite men’s events in the past but Agadir’s tournament in 2011 is the only venue in Morocco that has had a FIVB World Tour event. Quick links - Beach volleyball:
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The men’s championship team at the 2011 FIVB Agadir Open was the Netherlands’ Reinder Nummerdor/Richard Schuil. The silver medal went to Germany’s Julius Brink/Jonas Reckermann (who went on to win the gold medal at the London 2012 Olympic Games).
The five-star structure instituted starting with the 2017 FIVB World Tour is one of the many steps taken by the FIVB to modernize and streamline its competitions in a golden period for beach volleyball on the heels of the Rio 2016 Olympic Games and on the road to the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games.
FIVB President Dr. Ary S. Graça F° said, “The aim of the new structure is to provide a platform and formation of events that increase the number of competitions in a growing number of hosting countries and create a sustainable business model while providing additional commercial flexibility and opportunities.”
Agadir is a major city in Morocco, located on the shore of the Atlantic Ocean near the foot of the Atlas Mountains, just north of the point where the Sous River flows into the ocean. It is at a distance of 508 km (315 miles) to the south of Casablanca. It is the capital of the Agadir-Ida Ou Tanane Prefecture and of the Souss-Massa economic region. A majority of its inhabitants speak Shilha/Tashelhit, a Berber language of the Atlas branch, as their first language.
The city was destroyed by an earthquake in 1960; it has been completely rebuilt with mandatory seismic standards. It is now the largest seaside resort in Morocco, where foreign tourists and many residents are attracted by an unusually mild year-round climate. Since 2010 it has been well served by low-cost flights and a motorway from Tangier. The city attracts all walks of life; it has had an annual growth rate of over six percent per year.
The mild winter climate (January average midday temperature 20.5 °C/69 °F) and good beaches have made it a major "winter sun" destination for northern Europeans.
The highlight of the 2017 FIVB Beach Volleyball World Tour calendar will be the $1,000,000 2017 FIVB World Championships, a 48-team (per gender) event to be held July 28-August 6 in Vienna, Austria.
The 2017 FIVB World Ranking system will include FIVB Beach Volleyball Major Series, 5-star, 4-star, 3-star, 2-star and 1-star events along with additional pre-approved events at the inter-continental, continental and national levels.
Implemented in 2013, the format of all the FIVB Beach Volleyball international tournaments are the same, featuring pool play followed by single elimination knockout rounds.
Country quota playoffs are also held, as needed, to determine the final teams for qualification tournaments.
The first men’s FIVB World Tour event was played February 17-22, 1987 in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil while the first women’s FIVB World Tour event in Brazil was played in 1993 in Rio de Janeiro. The women’s FIVB World Tour held its first tournament in Spain in 1992.