Australian Beach Volleyball Tour Arrives in Mollymook this Weekend
The Australian Beach Volleyball Tour (ABVT) will make its way to the Shoalhaven on the NSW South Coast this week for the inaugural Mollymook Open (18-20 February).
The 2022 ABVT is set to deliver another action packed weekend of beach volleyball, continuing on from a great opening leg at the Cobram-Barooga Classic earlier this month.
Tokyo Olympian Chris McHugh and his new partner Paul Burnett will headline the Men’s Elite division, with a target on their backs after winning the event in Cobram, following a few tight three-set battles.
Having teamed up at the end of 2021, McHugh said the duo are still finding their groove as teammates, but feeling more confident after their Cobram win.
“We take confidence every time we step on the court,” the Gold Coast 2018 Commonwealth Games gold medallist said.
“We’re still a relatively new team so we’re still working out some things in our game and within our team structure.
“Paul played some really good defense in Cobram and it’s an element of our game we can continue to improve.
“Going into Mollymook, we’re now the hunted and everyone is trying to give us a bit of a beat down so we’ve got to keep on our A-Game,” he said.
In the women’s event, Phoebe Bell and Stefanie Fejes will be aiming to defend their Cobram crown, heading in again as number one seeds.
Cobram was Bell and Fejes’ first tournament together, so they quickly had to discover each other’s strengths, weaknesses and style of play whilst in competition mode.
Bell said she felt like the pair were finding their rhythm towards the end of the tournament, which will help them going into Mollymook.
“I think we were finally starting to find our flow in offense towards the end of Cobram, so that’s something I want to start with leading into Mollymook,” Bell said.
“I had so much fun playing with Phoebe as we explored the ways for our team to thrive and flow,” Fejes added.
“I would definitely love to keep building on our team dynamics and just playing a free and enjoyable game full of variety in Mollymook.”
The Mollymook Open will also see the return of Rio 2016 Olympian Nikki Laird and her partner Jessyka Ngauamo, who will be looking to get back onto the National Tour podium after missing the Cobram-Barooga Classic,
The ABVT is also the perfect platform for Volleyball Australia’s high performance athletes who have begun to ramp up preparations for the Birmingham 2022 Commonwealth Games.
With the elite beach volleyball national tour making its way to Mollymook for the first time, Shoalhaven City Council Tourism Manager, Coralie Bell said “After what has been a turbulent few years for the region, and industry, we are excited to welcome this event, which will activate the seaside town of Mollymook and showcase our spectacular region.
“Whilst in town get out and explore our magnificent beaches through the 100 Beach Challenge, taste some amazing Shoalhaven wine at one of our nine cellar doors and book into one of the many acclaimed restaurants throughout the region”.
Those coming to Mollymook ABVT can RSVP to the Facebook Event for all the latest information + tips for visiting the Shoalhaven
All Centre Court Matches will be streamed live on the AusVolley YouTube account.
For the full field of athletes, seeding information, draws and results – click here.