Volleyball Australia (VA) has today welcomed the news by Commonwealth Games Australia (CGA) and the Commonwealth Games Federation (CGF) that the 2026 Games will return to Victoria.

As part of today’s announcement, Beach Volleyball will be included as part of the core 16 sports for the 2026 Commonwealth Games.

Volleyball Australia CEO, Andrew Dee, said today’s announcement was welcomed news and aligns with the 10+10 vision for sport in Australia perfectly.

“Today’s announcement that the Commonwealth Games will return to Victoria in 2026 and that beach Volleyball will be part of the core 16 sports, is great news for our whole sport.

“We witnessed first hand the great opportunities and exposure our sport received in 2018 when the Gold Coast hosted the Games our teams collected a gold and silver medal.

“As we also build towards a home Olympic Games in 2032, another major international event on home soil aligns the strategies VA, CGA, AOC and other national sports are working towards in terms of investment into sport from grassroots through to elite programs.

“It provides our sport with greater opportunities to ensure our programs and events provide more Australians with the chance to take part in Volleyball as well as unearth a new generation of talent to represent their country.

“With just over 100 days to go until the Birmingham Commonwealth Games, this will be an added boost for our teams finalising their preparations,” he said.

In what will be a first-ever predominantly regional Commonwealth Games, Victoria 2026 will be staged in March 2026 across multiple cities and regional hubs including Melbourne, Geelong, Bendigo, Ballarat and Gippsland. Melbourne will host the Opening Ceremony. 

Not only will the Games deliver new economic opportunities through event infrastructure – it will deliver the double benefit of creating local jobs and housing as well as world-class sports facilities. 

A Victoria-wide program of live sites and activations will ensure visitors are welcomed in every corner of the State, with the Queen’s Baton Relay to traverse the regions in the weeks leading up to the Opening Ceremony. 

There will be a phased approach in creating the sports programme for Victoria 2026. An initial 16 sports, that includes beach volleyball, have been put forward for the Games, with further sports to be added later this year. 

Commonwealth Games Australia President Ben Houston said CGA had been seeking a host for 2026 and worked closely with the CGF for the past two years to bring the Commonwealth Games back to Australia. 

“Commonwealth Games Australia is thrilled to welcome the athletes of the Commonwealth back to Australia and we look forward to working with both the CGF and the Victorian Government to bring the Games to life across Victoria in 2026. 

“A home Games will provide immeasurable benefits for our Member sports and will inspire our athletes in what will be a unique and exciting Games. 

“More than that, the Victoria 2026 Commonwealth Games will play a key role in the development of Australian sport at all levels. 

“We will have three editions of the Commonwealth Games in the lead up to the 2032 Olympic and Paralympic Games in Brisbane. 

“Three ‘Home-Games’ for our athletes and sports in six years, plus the additional benefit of World Cup’s and World Championship events that will be held in Victoria and across Australia. 

“It will be a ‘Green and Gold’ festival for a decade. 

“Together with the Australian Olympic Committee, our collective long-term vision of how sport can power Australia’s future has been outlined in the Sport: Powering Australia’s Future (10+10) submission to the 2021 Intergenerational Report, and is already being delivered. The 2026 Commonwealth Games in Victoria will be the accelerator to supercharge these unique opportunities in Victoria and the whole country across the next decade and the 10 years after that,” Mr Houston said. 

The 2026 Games will be the 23rd edition of the major multi-sport competition, which first began in Hamilton, Canada in 1930. The 2022 Commonwealth Games will be staged in Birmingham, England from 28 July – 8 August 2022 where Australia is expected to be represented by 425 athletes across all 21 sports.

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