Continental body throws out Kenya’s appeal for beach qualification

Friday, May 15th, 2020 10:00 |
Kenya women’s national beach volleyball team coach Sammy Mulinge (left) takes players through their paces during a training session at Flamingo beach in Mombasa early this year. Photo/PD/NDEGWA GATHUNGU

Nairobi, Thursday

Kenya’s beach volleyball hopes to return to the Continental Cup and seek a ticket to the rescheduled Tokyo Olympic Games has been dismissed by the World volleyball governing body FIVB.

Instead, the FIVB has said whereas the new Continental Cup qualification deadline has been extended to June 2021, no further changes will be incorporated. 

Kenya forfeited its chance to gain a ticket to 2021 Tokyo Games after they failed to honor the second round matches in Banjul, Gambia (men) and Abuja, Nigeria (women) due to COVID-19.

Kenya Volleyball Federation (KVF) president Waithaka Kioni said they had petitioned Africa body CAVB to reconsider including Kenya when the health situation improves for the revised fixtures. 

However, on Wednesday, FIVB updated its qualification procedure for the games. 

“The new Continental Cup qualification deadline has been extended to June 2021 and the Continental Cup Finals will be held in the same week of 21-27 June 2021 with the respective winners winning the ticket to the Olympics,” said FIVB President Ary Graca.

“The new Olympic Ranking qualification deadline has been extended and the Olympic ranking list will be published on 14 June 2021.”  FIVB ruled out any further changes to the qualification system. 

“The eligibility criteria will remain the same, with teams being required to participate in a minimum of 12 qualifying events in all qualification pathways. A team’s best 12 results will count towards their Olympic ranking,” said Graca.

FIVB has also underscored the need to reflect the allocation method and pathways of the original qualification system that were in place before the postponement of the Olympic Games Tokyo 2020. 

“We believe that these changes to the beach volleyball qualification for the Olympic Games represent a balanced, fair and universal approach which will ensure that top performing athletes have the opportunity to qualify for the Games,” said Graca.

“With this announcement, we are giving beach volleyball players certainty of the roadmap for the lead up to Tokyo 2021, and so they continue to focus on maintaining their health and wellbeing at this time.” -Xinhua

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