After graduating from Cal in 2002 and leaving the indoor volleyball scene, I started playing in grass volleyball tournaments. While the competition was fun, I felt that many aspects of those tournaments could be improved upon. Consequently, I decided to host my own tournaments with the aim to improve tournament organization, minimize down-time, increase playing-time, eliminate "membership" or "season pass" fees, and emphasize sportsmanship and a friendly atmosphere. In fact, Rule#1 of VBmatch tournaments states:
1. Keep it fun; keep it friendly: Please introduce yourself to anyone you don't know.
All players advance to playoffs. Bring your "A" game, but this ain't the FIVB or the
so please keep your perspective and keep your "cool" at all times.
The first VBmatch tournament was held in November 2002. The 32 participants were primarily friends or friends-of-friends. The tournament format -- random-draw reverse-coed doubles (aka King/Queen) -- provided a fun social setting where participants played with many different partners throughout the day.
The following year, I hosted five tournaments including a reverse-coed quads tournament. In 2004, I ventured back into the indoor volleyball arena with a fundraising tournament for Los Altos High School's Girl's Volleyball Team. Since then, I've hosted a number of fundraising tournaments benefitting teams such as Cal's Men's Club Volleyball, Alameda Girls' Volleyball, Oak Grove Girls' Volleyball and Stanford's Women's Club Volleyball.
VBmatch is a work-in-progress as I continue to make improvements on the events. This includes creating new formats (e.g. unisex random-draw reverse-coed doubles), adding new divisions (e.g. Juniors boys and girls) and tweaking existing rules to make the game more challenging, more social and more fun for participants. I'm always open to new ideas and suggestions, so please feel free to contact me especially if your team is interesetd in hosting a fundraising tournament.
Many volleyball players recently transplanted from other parts of the U.S. have played in VBmatch tournaments and commented that they found a challenging level of volleyball and an immediate community of friends.
I hope that you too will find the VBmatch community an enjoyable place to hang out, meet new friends and improve on your volleyball game.