If you were at the beach volleyball (BVB) courts at the Sports Hub during the weekend of March 25 to 27, you would have seen some amazing BVB action during the 1st National Beach Series 2016.
This event saw athletes from Singapore, Japan, Canada, U.S., Vietnam, Italy, France and Russia, making up a total of 22 single gender duos competing for top rankings in this series of a total of 3 tournaments spread throughout the year. The three youngest players in the tournament were 16-year-old Kilani Daane, 15-year-old Chu Chu Pan and 14-year-old Delphine Sim from the National Beach Volleyball Developmental Team.
Singapore’s women’s beach vollyeball team of Faye Sai (left) and Zihui Zenn, known as Team FnZ, celebrating a point during the 1st National Beach Series 2016. Photo: Lim Sau Boon/ Team Nila
Defending their number one ranking was Singapore’s own women’s team of Faye Sai and Zihui Zenn, known as Team FnZ, who continued to dominate in the arena. Team FNZ’s superior play and teamwork did not happen overnight as they have been playing, and growing, together since 2007.
Faye and Zenn discovered early on that they had a unique chemistry on the court, which also proved to be a dominating factor in this tournament when they, once again, retained their ranking as Singapore’s top team to beat. Team FNZ’s accolades include 5 National Titles, routinely placing in the top 8 at prestigious international tournaments, such as the Asian Volleyball Confederation (AVC), and even a 1st place title in the Philippines.
Faye (serving in background) and Zenn in action. Photo: Lim Sau Boon/ Team Nila
Experience is not the only thing these two firecrackers demonstrated during this National Beach Series, but also heart, drive, and an unbeatable will to remain on top. During the preliminary round, Team FnZ did not only drop a set, but had to forfeit one match against 16-year-old Kilani Daane and her partner Jesselyn Johnston from Team Canuckippines, due to heat exhaustion during scorching temperatures when Team Canuckippines managed to push the match into a 3rd set. In an amazing display of sheer will and determination, Team FnZ recovered miraculously to continue their dominance over other teams and went on to take the title again and remain the number one ranked team in Singapore.
If we have piqued your interest in Beach Volleyball, come and witness these amazing athletes fight to retain their title during the 2nd National Beach Series happening from May 28 to 29, as well as during the final tournament of the year in September.
This article was contributed by Ursula Pong, a volunteer with Team Nila