2014 saw Scotland compete in Slovenia in Round 1 of the CEV Continental Cup, which is the first stage in a route to qualification for the Olympics in Rio 2016. We contested and finished in a creditable 3rd place out of 5 teams.
The success in Slovenia meant Scotland progressed on Round 2 and were to host this round at Portobello Beach, Edinburgh. The first International Beach Volleyball event was an outstanding event and a turning point for the game. With around 5000 people attending throughout the sunny weekend it honestly felt history was written. With the men winning their round and the women coming second there was a lot to smile about at the end. Never before had beach volleyball enjoyed so much popularity and momentum. Never before so many people cheered for our new beach volleyball heroes.
Cashing in on that cheque, we have set to enter in the third stage of the competition in Austria from the 30th April to 1st May. This third stage of the Olympic qualifying event takes place in the outskirts of Vienna for the very first time with teams from as many as 10 countries. Who would have thought that Scotland could go so far?
Regardless of the opponents, regardless of the weather conditions, the squads have been training hard to prepare. The standard will be advanced, with the top 8 seeds in Europe coming into the mix at this stage .We are mindful of our opponents strength and respectful of their history. We are proud to be on the same competition with countries that have made their mark in the world of volleyball.
Scotland Men will play Russia, Ukraine and Norway, with the women being drawn against Russia, Ukraine and Bulgaria. We know the challenge is a tough one, but we are up for the fight. After the end of the Portobello international tournament as we progressed on the sand, we made the pledge and the promise that we shall always march ahead.
Selection took place recently and the squads travelling to Austria will be:
Mel Coutts & Lynne Beattie
Gillian Lyall & Katie Barbour
Jane Drauz-Brown & Claire Ramage
Coach: Ioannis Panayiotakis
Seain Cook & Robin Miedzybrodzki
Barry McGuigan & Graham Riddle
Reserves: Paul Glissov & Colin Paterson
Coach: Colin Paterson