With less than two weeks to go before the first game of the #EuroSittingVolley, World ParaVolley President Barry Couzner is sending his best wishes to the organiser and the teams in the letter below:
On behalf of World ParaVolley I wish to congratulate all of the teams participating in the 2019 European Sitting Volleyball Championships in the wonderful city of Budapest, Hungary. It is always a challenge to plan and organise a team to participate in Sitting Volleyball events around the world.
Historically, Europe has been the strongest of the 4 World ParaVolley Zones with the most Members. This has necessitated a creative solution to the potential large team numbers, and I congratulate ParaVolley Europe on the solution – to have different divisions with a team promotion option based on performance. I note that ParaVolley Europe has also been creative in other areas such as the historic Drawing of Lots on the Danube that was live streamed for the first time and making the event a “digital Championship”. A focus on improvement and creating history should be acknowledged and supported as it advances our sport.
This event has great significance in that the top-ranked teams, men and women, not already qualified for Tokyo 2020, will celebrate by packing their bags for participation in the elite 8-team Sitting Volleyball competitions that are the Tokyo Paralympic Games. They will join the already qualified teams of:
MEN – IRI, BIH, CHN, JPN
WOMEN – RUS, USA, CHN, JPN
(The remaining 4 teams will come from Europe, Africa, Pan America and the Final Qualifier)
I wish all teams the very best and hope that the athletes thoroughly enjoy the competition and their stay in Budapest – the Queen of the Danube.
Barry Couzner OAM
President, World ParaVolley