First all-female Saudi volleyball tournament set to launch

Saudi Arabia's first all-female volleyball tournament set to launch
1 min read
03 August, 2021
Fourteen teams will play in qualifying rounds of Saudi Arabia's first-ever, all-female volleyball tournament starting this week.
Hanan Salih Al-Qahtani, a member of Saudi Arabia’s volleyball union, said the tournament marked the start of a strong foundation for the sport [Getty]

Saudi Arabia's first-ever all-female volleyball tournament is set to launch on Thursday, according to local media.

Fourteen teams will play in qualifying rounds across Riyadh, Jeddah, and Saudi Arabia's Eastern province from 5 August until 21 August.

The top two teams from each region will compete in play-offs next month.

Hanan Salih Al-Qahtani, a member of Saudi Arabia’s volleyball union said it marked the start of a strong foundation for the sport, with a view to one day creating a national women's team.

The tournament's launch comes after some discriminatory gender laws were relaxed, including allowing women to drive.

Saudi woman judoka Tahani Al-Qahtani was defeated by her Israeli opponent at the Tokyo 2020 Olympics.

She said she "wasn't interested" in criticism about her decision to face off against an Israeli opponent, following calls for a boycott.

Some Arab judokas have withdrawn from matches against Israeli opponents over their support for the Palestinian cause.