Spikefest sets up for more kudos

 

Indoor volleyball will continue to have a sound future in the Cayman Islands. 

With the 2013 Cayman Airways Spikefest competition set to start, officials within the Cayman Islands Volleyball Federation say the sport will feature on the local scene for years to come. As tournament director Fareed Hosein says, Spikefest paves the way for more international tournaments to be hosted here. 

“This tournament exemplifies our continuing commitment to volleyball in both forms of the sport and is invaluable in developing our younger players,” Hosein said. “Also, the Cayman Islands has now developed the reputation as a significant player worldwide for hosting volleyball tournaments, so we would like to continue with this trend. 

“Last year we held a World Championship qualifier in Cayman and with the Olympics again approaching, we will likely host a qualifying event for our region in the near future.” 

Spikefest gets going this weekend, Nov. 9-10, at the University College of the Cayman Islands multipurpose hall. Organized by the federation, the event is in its seventh year and after a brief hiatus, 2013 will mark its fourth consecutive edition. 

Cayman players will compete at UCCI’s Sir Vassel Johnson Hall this weekend from 9 a.m. on Saturday, Nov. 9, with the finals taking place from 6 p.m. on Sunday, Nov. 10. Admission is free. Players from Jamaica, Bahamas, the United States, Barbados and Trinidad and Tobago will be flying down to face local talent.  

Teams from around the region usually compete. Last year, Caribbean All Stars were the men’s champions, while Venus, representing the University of the West Indies in Jamaica, won the women’s title.  

Over the years, Cayman has featured the likes of Martin Bodden, Richard Campbell, Jessica Wolfenden and Stefania Gandolfi aligned to local clubs with names like Cayman Sunsets and Upsetters. 

An interesting twist this year will be the inclusion of beach volleyball into the event proceedings. The federation has planned a one-day tournament at Royal Palms for those participating in Spikefest on the Remembrance Day holiday. Matches will run 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. on Monday, Nov. 11.  

Hosein said after Spikefest, beach action will be in the spotlight again. 

“Our beach leagues continue to thrive and be a significant participation event for the federation. We also continue to run volleyball events throughout the year locally, so our local volleyball scene is quite significant and caters to all levels, for both volleyball and beach volleyball.” 

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Jessica Wolfenden is a top local player.

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Spikefest will showcase some of the region’s best players.
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