FIVB Beach Press Release, 19th December 1997


The 1998 Beach Volleyball Season

LAUSANNE, December 18, 1997; Six new events figure on the 1998 Beach Volleyball World Tour Calendar announced Thursday by the International Volleyball Federation. Players from more than 50 countries will be competing for more than US$ 4 million in prize money.

There are 14 men's events carrying a total jackpot of $2,490,000. The $300,000 Portugal Grand Slam scheduled for Espinho from August 7 to 9 is the biggest money earner, while the other tournaments offer $170,000, a rise of $20,000 on last year.

The women gain parity with the men with eight of the nine events being worth $170,000, an increase of $50,000 on the 1997 figure. The newly-introduced Canadian Open carries the biggest prize money of $190,000, which makes a total purse of $ 1,550,000 for 1998.

The Canadian Open, which will be staged in Toronto June 19-21 also appears on the men's calendar for the first time. The other new men's events are the Argentinean, Czech Republic and Russia Opens, while the China Open is introduced on the women's circuit.

The calendar door has not been closed, negotiations are in progress for a U.S. women's open and two men's events in South Africa and Bahrain.

Beach Volleyball tournaments are included in the Goodwill Games and will offer $100,000 prize money each to the 8 best nations in the World Ranking from July 22-26 (men) and from July 29-August 2, 1998 in Central Park (New York).
Beach Volleyball is enjoying its place in the sun. The FIVB has announced the appointment of Prisma Sports & Media to handle all television sales and broadcaster co-ordination for Beach Volleyball. The agreement follows the success of last year's World Championships in Los Angeles which was televised in more than 120 countries and is part of the FIVB's long-term strategy to expand the development of the game. There will be a regular Beach Volleyball television highlights programme through the season, with ranking updates and player features in addition to coverage of the yearly World Tour events and World Championships (1999 & 2001) running from 1998 to 2001 inclusive.

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