Sporting Destination: World Beach Reps Here Next Month

Fiji is more than a tourism destination now. There’s an extra pull that lures visitors to Fiji more than the sun, smile and the sand. We are now becoming a
04 Dec 2016 11:24
Sporting Destination: World Beach Reps Here Next Month
NADI-FIJI – Vijay Singh of Fiji in action on day one of the Fiji International at the Natadola Bay Championship Golf Course, Nadi Fiji, Thursday, August 14, 2014 .The US$ 1 million tournament is part of the OneAsia circuit. Picture by Paul Lakatos/OneAsia

Fiji is more than a tourism destination now. There’s an extra pull that lures visitors to Fiji more than the sun, smile and the sand.

We are now becoming a marketable and a growing sporting destination.

We can only look back, appreciate and be proud of what we have achieved so far this year in hosting regional and international tournaments.

Who would have thought that we would one day host a Super Rugby match?

We did it and attracted a good rugby crowd and for that we have been rewarded with hosting the second one at the ANZ Stadium in Suva between the Chiefs and Crusaders on May 19.

We hosted the Fiji International golf tournament for the third year in a row attracting a top professionals like Matt Kuchar and Brandt Snedeker. And we are bound to attract more next year and beyond.

This year we hosted three regional volleyball tournaments; two indoor and one beach. And it didn’t go unnoticed.

Stand up paddleboarding has joined surfing and yachting as other examples of international events here.

In another first for the country, Fiji will now host the first event of the FIVB Beach Volleyball Tour next month in Pacific Harbour, Deuba.

This is the first time Fiji will be hosting a FIVB sanctioned event after being confirmed as one of the new venues in the 2017 calendar of events released by the World Tour Council in Switzerland on Wednesday.

Fiji Volleyball Federation president Elesi Ketedromo said this is another proud sporting moment for the country.

Ketedromo said: “We hosted three regional tournaments this year and we convinced the FIVB in Switzerland last week, on the recommendation of the Oceania Volleyball rep that Fiji can host a World Tour event.

“We are getting recognized as a sporting destination and it’s good for the sport and the country.

“We more than a tourism destination now and we are happily grateful for the active involvement of the Ministry for Trade, Industry and Tourism.

“This is a big thing to ever happen to beach volleyball in the country and it’s bound to grow.”

The FIVB Beach Volleyball World Tour calendar will begin with a one-star event at Pacific Harbour onJanuary 12-14 and end with a three-star event in Qinzhou, the last of three events in China also including a three-star event in Xiamen (April 20-23) and the FIVB Beach Volleyball U21 World Championships in Nanjing from July 11-16.

Apart from producing world and Olympic champions, we have proved to the world that we have the facilities, people power and the locations to host major events.

But this would not have been possible without the commitment, sacrifice of all stakeholders and the FijiFirst Government for playing the leading role in promoting our sporting nation.

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