22 - 28 July 1999
Issue No. 439
|Published in Cairo by AL-AHRAM established in 1875|
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A game is bornBy Abeer Anwar
Never heard of park volleyball? You are not the only one. Now, however, the International Volleyball Federation (FIVB) World Congress has decided to address this inadequacy by launching the sport on the international scene, beginning with a major event next September.
Park volleyball, as the name suggests, is mainly an outdoor game, though it can also be played indoors. The game is played across a net by two teams, each made up of four players. The object of the game is to ground the ball -- a regular volleyball -- on the opponent's side of the court and prevent the opponent from doing the same to you. The number of substitute players is decided by both teams in advance, and unlimited player substitutions are allowed whenever the ball is out of play. Each rally is worth one point, and a match is won by the first team to win 25 or more rallies and establish a two-point lead over their opponents. The number of sets is determined by either the organiser or the participants.
The game is, in fact, just a simplified version of volleyball, and one that makes fewer technical demands. Hence, players are not categorised by either sex or age, only by their willingness to participate in a fair game irrespective of their final score. As a rule, the players themselves will act as referees.
To promote the sport, delegates at the last FIVB World Congress meeting in Tokyo last November decided to take it under their wing. Preparations are therefore now underway in the Swiss town of Lausanne for the first international park volleyball event which is scheduled for 11-12 September. FIVB will provide court space on the shores of Lake Leman. The event is expected to draw hundreds of children, youngsters and others to take part in the competition. Competitors will be divided into four age groups: 9 to 12, 13 to 14, 15 to 17, and 18 years and over.