Lausanne, Switzerland, March 14, 2020: A joint decision has been made by the FIVB and Volleyball Australia to postpone the FIVB Beach Volleyball 3* event scheduled for 18-22 March at Coolangatta Beach, Gold Coast, Australia due to the ongoing global coronavirus outbreak.
While Volleyball Australia, supported by Queensland Government, had planned preventative measures to protect the wellbeing of all those involved, the FIVB and the organisers recognise that there are international travel limitations and other restrictions in different parts of the world that impact the ability of some of the participants to take part in the event.
The health of athletes, officials and fans is the FIVB's top priority. The mutual decision to postpone the event was made in the best interests of all parties. The FIVB and Volleyball Australia will work together to identify dates later in 2020 when the event can be held, and this will be communicated at a later stage.
The FIVB is monitoring the situation in regard to the rapidly evolving coronavirus on an hour-by-hour basis and is in full cooperation with the World Health Organisation and other international and national health and sports authorities.
The FIVB acknowledges that it is likely that there will be further changes to the beach volleyball calendar and is, therefore, already in contact with the IOC about potentially revising the beach volleyball qualification system for the Olympic Games Tokyo 2020. All relevant stakeholders will be informed of any potential changes at a later stage.
Volleyball Australia’s President, Craig Carracher, says, “We are saddened for the athletes who have travelled to compete at beautiful Coolangatta Beach next weekend and also disappointed for the many athletes that have missed the opportunity to compete in Australia. A world tour event requires the opportunity for all to compete, and that opportunity is now not available to our athletes. Additionally, with the FIVB sanction the event could not responsibly go ahead.
Volleyball Australia has taken the most extensive precautions to protect and support all attendees at the event including closing the public stadiums to accredited personnel. We thank the Queensland Government, our sponsors, and Mrs Rinehart, our Patron, for all their support throughout this difficult decision-making period. But we promise to return bigger and better than ever with the support of the FIVB and it senior management who have worked tirelessly with us to try and preserve the competition opportunity.”