Canada's defending champ ready for beach volleyball under-21 worlds in Halifax

HALIFAX – Defending champion Garrett May of Toronto and his new partner Danny Demyanenko of Toronto headline the Canadian entries at the world under-21 beach volleyball world championships which start here Wednesday (August 31).

The competition is being held on the Salter Lot of the Halifax Waterfront. This is the first time in the event’s 11-year history that it is being held in North America.

May took took the gold medal at last year’s under-21 worlds in Turkey with Sam Schachter of Toronto. He joins forces with 6’8’’ Demyanenko who had an impressive run at the world juniors (under-19) tournament in June in Croatia reaching the quarterfinals with Andrew Kocur of Toronto.
'’I’m very excited by this new challenge,’’ said May. ‘’ There are a lot of great teams going to the tournament. I’m confident Danny and I will have a good showing.’’

Also pre-selected to the main draw for Canada in the men’s tournament are: Nick Del Bianco and Ben Chow of Surrey, B.C.,  and Fiodar Kazhamiaka of Waterloo, Ont., and William Sidgwick of Toronto.

Pre-selected to the main draw for Canada on the women’s side (on photo) are: Victoria Altomare and Melissa Humana-Paredes of Toronto; Sarah Gosselin of Granby, Que., and Sara Robichaud of Gatineau, Que., as well as  Alexandra Hudson of Mississauga, Ont., and Charlotte Sider of St. Stephen, N.B.

Gathered in Halifax for this year’s event are 61 teams (29 men and 32 women) from 25 countries. With 20 teams in each gender pre-seeded into their respective main draws, qualification tournaments will be held Wednesday to determine the final four main draw spots.

The 24 teams will be divided into six four-team pools for round-robin play on Thursday and Friday with the top two teams in each pool along with the best four third place teams advancing to the single-elimination bracket phase that will begin on Friday afternoon.  The medal matches for each gender will be held on Sunday on the Salter Sand center court.

A total of 2,000 tons of special sand have been transported to the Salter Sand complex to build the four competition and two practice courts for the venue, which includes the 2,000-seat featured center court.

Admission to the event is free for Wednesday’s qualifying and tickets are on sale for the main draw days (Thursday through Sunday) through the event website at www.sandjamhalifax.ca or by calling  902.444.3773. Children, five and under, are free for the entire event.

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For more information: www.volleyball.ca and www.fivb.org