11-12 June 2011
City of Edinburgh Council’s Activcity programme supported this event for a 5th consecutive year, a credit to the professionalism and dedication to City of Edinburgh Volleyball Club whose volunteers tirelessly turn up on the beach each year to prepare the tournament, come rain come shine. We definitely experienced the ‘come rain’ part of the equation on the Saturday when women’s division 1 and mixed recreational 4s battled the elements all day. New pairings of Kamila Zakoutska and Fiona Kennie looked likely winners in the final against Mel Coutts and Natalija Durkaca as they took a surprise 1 set lead. Coutts and Durkaca came back strongly in set 2, so it was all to play for in set 3. At 13-8 up it looked like Zakoutska and Kennie would clinch it, but some strong serving and defence from their opposition led Coutts and Durkaca to a 15-13 victory, their first tournament win together.
In the mixed 4s, there was a change in fortune as NUVOC beat arch rivals Linlithgow over 5 sets.
After a cold and wet day on the Saturday Portobello Beach looked like the coast of Spain on early Sunday morning. Of course this didn’t last but the players stayed dry the entire day which we were all thankful for!
There were a couple of changes to the tournament structure to allow some player categories to have more matches. Under 14s moved up to play with the U16s whilst U19s Matt Agius and Jedd Hunter and Div 2 entry Alex MacKenzie and Chris Gill were asked to step up a level to Men’s Div 1.
The U16s competition was a closely fought contest and in amongst this the U14s threw everything they had at the older competition. The excitement of this group probably drew the biggest crowd of the day to their court which was a credit to the effort and quality of play from the youngsters! The U14s were not only competing against the U16s but also each other for the U14s category. After Stobie and McHardy were found level on points with Hardman and Hardman they emerged victorious after the count back by one single point! Well done Stobie and McHardy!
The U16s played off to a semi final and final match and once again the competition was fierce with many points contested to the referee when emotions ran high!
Tournament favourites Tennant and McHardy made it to the final with a more little comfort than counter parts Arthur and Brown but a shock result in the U16 final saw the ball control and scrambling ability of Arthur and Brown brush aside the competition. Well done guys!
U19s Agius and Hunter played very well in the group stages and playoffs of Men’s Div 1 earning their title as U19 champions but also stating that they are ready to challenge teams in Div 1 as they snatched a victory at the end of the day. Keep up the good work guys!
Mens Div 1 seemed to be heading in one direction from the group results as Paterson and Cook, from group 2, and Krawczyk and Mosinski, from group 1 put together some convincing scores. Each came out on top of their group and looked certain to meet each other in the final.
McGuigan and new beach boy McHardy were slowly starting to find some form and dispatched Krawczyk and Mosinski very quickly in the semi final setting up a rematch with Paterson and Cook who also strolled through their semi final match against Kiszka and Malinowski.
The weather had taken a turn for the worse again as the final begun, with the wind swirling around. Paterson and Cook picked on the inexperience of McHardy who was involved in a crash course beach lesson from his partner, but credit is due for the Edinburgh star as he gave as good as he got. Paterson continue to use the wind to his advantage whilst Cook powered and cut away just enough to squeeze the first set 21-19!
The second set saw the experience and cunning of Paterson take hold of the game and the wheels slowly came off on the other side of the net. A one sided affair in the second set which Paterson and Cook rightfully stepped up and took the Div 1 title.