Beach Volleyball pair confident as they fly to St Lucia
A brand-new beach volleyball pairing of Brandon Sousa and Ryan Davies fly out to St Lucia on Wednesday to compete in the Eastern Caribbean Volleyball Championships.
Davies and Sousa played with different partners when representing Bermuda on the North, Central American and Caribbean Beach tour in Cayman last November, but they will be teaming up for the first time in competition this week after working hard in training
“Brandon and I are generally the defensive player on each team but this time we’re going together, so we have had to cross-train on blocking,” Davies said.
“We’re going to be split-blocking this tournament, which is something we don’t normally do and we’ve just paired up. We’re both the shorter players out of the partners we had last time and this time we’re paired together, which should be interesting.
“We’re good at scrambling and defence so hopefully we’ll be a scrappy team, pick up a lot of balls and get them back in play, and make opposing team make errors.”
Training on the beach can be hard in winter but loss of time on the sand has been supplemented by putting in the hard yards off the court.
“The winter makes it a lot harder because we only have Saturday and Sunday to train,” Davies said.
“At least in the summer you can get out for an hour after work but right now there is no time to go out and train, so we have just been using Saturday and Sunday mornings. We have tried to supplement those with classes during the week and we had indoor training up until about a week and a half ago.”
The tournament in Cayman was a steep learning curve for Bermuda’s players with only Sousa’s team winning a match but Davies has used the experience wisely
“I think this time our fitness is a bit higher,” Davies said.
“From the last tournament, we took the set-ups some of the other team were using, such as the height of the set-ups, positioning to give our attackers a bit more time to get the ball and have a better look at the court.
“The first tournament was a big learning experience for us playing against higher-level teams so we have tried to mimic some of the things they were doing over the last month and a half.
Sousa is hopeful that there will be better results this time around and expects Bermuda to be extremely competitive.
“The experience was the main thing from the last tournament,” he said.
“We didn’t have high expectations going into it. This tournament is an eastern Caribbean one so it does not feature the United States, Mexico or Puerto Rico.
“We think we match up well against the teams in St Lucia, so we expect to be very competitive and possibly get some good results.”
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