Auckland, New Zealand, April 5, 2015 – Hosts New Zealand swept the men’s and women’s titles in the recent Oceania Volleyball Eastern Sub Zone Indoor Championship over the Easter weekend after powering past Samoa in both finals.
The tournament was held from April 3 to 5 with American Samoa, Cook Islands, New Zealand, Samoa, Tokelau and Tonga vying for the top honour.
The Oceania Eastern Sub Zone Vice President and President of American Samoa Volleyball, Mr Iose Afu said that he was very pleased with the attendance of six out of eight nations after a very short preparation with just two months.
He said that the decision to host the inaugural sub zonal indoor championship was made during the Oceania Volleyball Board meeting in February.
Mr Hugh Graham, the Oceania Volleyball Secretary-General, said before the official opening of the championship that he brought the best wishes from Oceania President Mr Craig Carracher for all participating countries. “On behalf of Mr Carracher, the Oceania President, I would like to extend my warm greetings to all participating countries, officials and players. I sincerely hope that all participants will enjoy the best of Eastern Sub Zone volleyball.”
Mr Graham also took this opportunity to acknowledge the contributions and assistance of FIVB President, DrAry Graca for his vision and confidence in Oceania. “Oceania Volleyball has surely demonstrated that we are no longer the ‘Lost Tribe’ of World Volleyball and that we are very eager to contribute to the growth of volleyball in Oceania” says MrGraham. “We have 23 national federations in our zone under AVC, eager to assist and contribute towards the Oceania Volleyball Development Plan 2014-18.
“The success of the Oceania Beach Championships, the Continental Cup Phase 1 and the Australian Grand Slam Beach Tour hosted by Australia Volleyball Federation, has given Oceania Volleyball a great start to more competitions and more participation in Oceania, a vision shared with us in Oceania by President Dr Ary Graca.
“On opening this the first Oceania Eastern Sub Zone International Indoor Championship, I also want to express my sincere thanks to the Eastern Sub Zone Vice President Mr Iose Afu and the event coordinator Mr James Summers for making this event possibly at such short notice” said Mr Graham.
New Zealand International Referee, Mr Des Kerekere officiated as Chief Referee while FIVB International Referee Instructor, Mr David Smith was there in an observer role. Mr Smith took the opportunity to be part of the championship as he was on his way to the Cook Islands to run a VCP FIVB Level 1 Refereeing Course.
In terms of the men’s finals, New Zealand pulled off a dramatic 3-1 (25-11 22-25 25-15 25-20) victory over Samoa, while the women’s showdown, the hosts also brushed off the similar visitors 3-1 (31-29 16-25 25-21 25-23).
Men’s team: 1. New Zealand A; 2 Samoa 1; 3. New Zealand B; 4. Samoa B; 5. American Samoa; 6. Cook Islands; 7. Tokelau; 8. Tonga
Women’s team: 1. New Zealand; 2. Samoa A; 3. Samoa B; 4. Tokelau; 5. Cook Islands; 6. Tonga