Kiwis set for world beach test
Shaunna Polley (L) and Alice Zeimann are ready to take on world on their sand. Photo by

Kiwis set for world beach test

Some of the best beach volleyball New Zealand has ever seen comes to Mount Maunganui Main Beach from Thursday with the first-ever World Beach Pro Tour event held in this country.

The Beach Pro Tour Futures event includes teams from around the world seeking points to climb the international rankings with combinations from China, Japan, Australia, USA, Germany, Scotland, Canada, Sweden, and France represented among those on the entry list.

Among the big international contingent, 18 Kiwi teams are set to feature across the men’s and women’s events which begins with Thursday’s qualifying draw. Four teams progress from the qualifying phase into the 16-team pool play main draw which starts on Friday.

On the women’s side, New Zealand’s number one combination of Shaunna Polley and Alice Zeimann – fresh off their domestic summer as G.J Gardner Homes NZ Beach Tour champions, go into the Futures event as the number one seeds on their own sand. The Asian Champion duo are currently ranked at 41 in the world.

Olivia Macdonald teams up with Julia Tilley for the Futures event and the Kiwi pair are seeded eighth while Katie Sadlier and Charlie Clarke are ninth, with NZ Junior Indoor captain Rosa Vesty and Kiana Stevenson – named on Tuesday as the Young Women’s Player of the Year from the domestic season – seeded 10th.

In the men’s competition, family duo Sam O’Dea and Ben O’Dea team up together as third seeds for the inaugural Beach Pro Tour event on their home beach while New Zealand Open champions Brad Fuller and Alani Nicklin are seeded fifth.

Fresh from their domestic tour champions title – Tom Reid and Jack McManaway are seeded ninth while Tom Hartles and Tom Heijs round out the Kiwis already in the main draw as the 11th seeded combination.

Ranked at 75 in the world, the Chinese pair of Likejian Ha and Jiaxin Wu are the top-seeds in the men’s competition.

New Zealand High Performance Coach Jason Lochhead, himself a former player on the world circuit, says the Beach Pro Tour event will be a great measuring stick for New Zealand’s best talent.

“Hosting a world tour event here in New Zealand is a great opportunity for our players to test themselves against international teams and see where they sit,” Lochhead said.

“Then they will know if they are ready to take on the world and understand areas where they can improve.”

Click here for all the event entry list and draw information (Volleyball World website).

Beach Pro Tour – Futures
Mt Maunganui Main Beach
March 16-19, 2023

Kiwis in action

Qualifying – Thursday 16 March
(seeding in brackets)


  • Meile Rose Green/Maria Hanabadi (2)
  • Anna Harrison/Holly Isherwood (3)
  • Susan Imhasly/Melissa Ruru (4)
  • Sydney Clough/Ariane Pola (5)


  • Charlie Dalton/Mike Watson (7)
  • Joshua Tiplady/Giles Black (8)
  • James Sadlier/Kyle Smith (9)
  • Juraj Krajci/Callum Stewart (10)
  • Campbell Forsyth/Greg Vukets (11)
  • Tyran Gillespie/Perry Preston (13)

Main Draw – from Friday 17 March
(Seeding in brackets)


  • Alice Zeimann/Shaunna Polley (1)
  • Oliva Macdonald/Julia Tilley (8)
  • Katie Sadlier/Charlie Clarke (9)
  • Rosa Vesty/Kiana Stevenson (10)


  • Sam O’Dea/Ben O’Dea (3)
  • Brad Fuller/Alani Nicklin (5)
  • Tom Reid/Jack McManaway (9)
  • Tom Hartles/Tom Heijs (11)