Lausanne, Switzerland, February 1, 2020 - After the men opened the 2020 portion of the 2019-2020 FIVB World Tour calendar last month with events in Iran and the Cook Islands, the women's first stop of the calendar year on the international beach volleyball schedule is set this coming week in Cambodia.
For the third-straight season, the southeast Asia country is staging FIVB World Tour events starting Thursday in Siem Reap with qualification followed by pool play Thursday at the US$25,000 Anchor Beach Volleyball Carnival.
The fourth women's event on the 2019-2020 FIVB World Tour schedule, the Anchor Beach Volleyball Carnival concludes Saturday with two elimination rounds followed by Sunday's semifinal and medal matches.
Siem Reap is hosting the women's FIVB World Tour for the first time after staging a men's only event in 2019. Phnom Penh (2018 and 2019) and Battambang (2019) have been the site for previous women's World Tour stops in Cambodia where pairs from Germany, Greece and the United States have topped the podiums.
The Anchor Beach Volleyball Carnival in Siem Reap is the 426th women’s World Tour event since the FIVB first sanctioned women’s tournaments in August 1992 at Almeria, Spain. Previous 2019-2020 stops for women have been in China, Israel and Mexico.
A total of 34 women’s teams from 17 countries are entered into the Anchor Beach Volleyball Carnival at Siem Reap (as of February 2, 2020), including pairs from Australia (2 teams), Austria (1), Cambodia (2), Canada (1), Chinese Taipei (2), Cyprus (1), Denmark (2), Germany (1), Israel (1), Japan (5), Russia (1), Slovenia (1), Switzerland (1), Thailand (4), Ukraine (2), United States (5) and Vanuatu (2).
Headlining the field is Australians Nicole Laird and Becchara Palmer, the 35th-ranked team on the FIVB circuit with one World Tour gold medal to their credit after topping a podium last March in Sydney. Both players have Olympic experience with Palmer competing in the London 2012 Summer Games and Laird four years later at the Rio 2016 competition.
Becchara Palmer (right) with Australian partner Louise Bawden at the London 2012 Olympic Games.
Following Siem Reap, the next World Tour women's event is March 5-8 in Guam (March 5-8) followed by stops in Malaysia (March 12-15 at Langkawi), Australia (March 18-22 at Coolangatta) and Mexico (March 25-29 at Cancun).
The men resume play February 20-23 with a Cambodian stop in Phnom Penh. The men will also compete in Malaysia, Australia and Mexico alongside single-gender stops in Iran (March 3-7 at Bandar Abbas) and Qatar (March 12-15 at Doha).
Nicole Laird (right) of Australia hitting against Kerri Walsh Jennings of the United States at the Rio 2016 Olympic Games.