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King of the Court returns to Utrecht

Utrecht, the Netherlands |

King of the Court first internationally appealing sports event in the Netherlands since the corona pandemic.

From Wednesday 9 to Saturday 12 September, the first international sports event on Dutch soil since the outbreak of the corona pandemic will be played on the Jaarbeursplein in Utrecht: King of the Court beach volleyball. The best beach volleyball teams of the world (men and women) will travel to the city in the centre of the Netherlands where they will lock horns for the first time since March. Sports event agency Sportworx, which organizes King of the Court in collaboration with the Nevobo and world volleyball association FIVB, presented the detailed plans this morning in Utrecht.

King of the Court: first internationally appealing sports event in the Netherlands since the corona pandemic

The last time the international beach volleyball top played on the FIVB Beach Volleyball World Tour was in early March at the four-star tournament in Doha (Qatar). Since then, all tournaments have been canceled or postponed due to the corona pandemic. In recent months, the Dutch and foreign teams have only been able to train.

The King of the Court tournament in Utrecht is the first international tournament where the global top competes again. King of the Court has been designated by the Dutch Sports Council as an internationally appealing sports event.

King of the Court is the first international top sport event on Dutch soil and the first international beach volleyball event in the world since the outbreak of the corona pandemic.

Innovative stadium

In September, a stadium will be built on Jaarbeursplein that will provide an innovative space for the public, while social distancing rules will be guaranteed. The entire stadium consists of sky boxes built from building material. The sky boxes are available for 2 to a maximum of 10 people and are reserved in advance. In this way, hundreds of spectators can safely enjoy top beach volleyball.

World’s best is coming to Utrecht

The first participating teams were also presented today. The best men's team of the moment, the Norwegian duo Anders Mol / Christian Sørum is present, as well as the Germans Julius Thole / Clemens Wickler and the Americans Jake Gibb / Taylor Crabb.

In the women's tournament, Canadian world champions Sarah Pavan and Melissa Humana-Paredes will be there if travelling is possible. Agatha / Duda (Brazil) and Joanna Heidrich / Anouk Vergé Depré (Switzerland) have indicated that they want to participate. More participants will be announced in the coming period.

Naturally, all Dutch top teams also make an appearance.

In total, 30 teams per gender participate in King of the Court.

What is King of the Court?

King of the Court is a new beach volleyball variant that has existed since 2017. The beach volleyball court is divided into a winners side and a challenger side. Points can only be scored on the winner's side. The game has many differences with regular beach volleyball. For example, five teams are active simultaneously instead of two, there is played on time and it is an elimination race.

In 2018, Sportworx organized the first international King of the Court tour of four tournaments, in Utrecht, Antwerp (Belgium), Hawaii and California.

The ambition is to make King of the Court an Olympic volleyball discipline in the near future. This development would fit in with IOC's policy to embrace new, fast-paced sports that capture the imaginations of youthful generations.

Quote Ary S. Graça, president of the world volleyball association FIVB

“On behalf of the FIVB we are glad to have supported Sportworx for several years now with the thrilling King of the Court Series. The project presents beach volleyball in a completely different format, and I believe it has great potential.

We will continue to bring new concepts and ideas to the sport to ensure the best possible experience for both the athletes and spectators. The positive feedback we have received so far from the players and all the other stakeholders proves the importance on the series. King of the Court provides more opportunities for athletes to play in a very exciting and competitive competition format.

In these challenging times, the tournament in The Netherlands will be the first international FIVB-sanctioned competition since the start of the global pandemic. And we welcome the efforts of the organisers and the Dutch government in hosting the event but also ensuring the health and well-being of the athletes and all other participants.”

Comments Anders Mol / Christian Sørum, nr. 1 world ranking:

Anders Mol: “We hope King of the Court will be in the Olympics also and it will be a lot of fun to play for another medal. We love playing in the Netherlands.”

Christian Sørum: “We really like the format of King of the Court. It is a new trend and the future for sport. In "normal" beach volleyball you have some good rallies, it’s fun to watch. But during King of the Court you have every rally, all the time. The atmosphere with the fans and the players are just amazing. So much fun.”

Ticket pre-registration now open

From now on it is possible to register for the ticket sale of King of the Court Utrecht here.