On the heels of the U-23 Pan American Cup, another high level men's volleyball tournament is coming to the Langley Events Centre (LEC).
Volleyball Canada announced Saturday that the LEC will play host to the 2013 NORCECA Men's Continental Volleyball Championship.
The event will be a partnership between the hosting partners of the LEC, Volleyball BC and Volleyball Canada.
The championship will take place next September.
It will be the biggest international tournament to ever be held in B.C. The NORCECA Continental Championship will include the top eight or nine men's teams from the NORCECA zone including Canada (world rank No. 18), USA (world rank No. 5) Cuba (No. 6), Puerto Rico (No. 21), Mexico (No. 23), Dominican Republic (No. 45) and two to three other qualifiers from Central America and the Caribbean, all sending their top rosters to Langley.
NORCECA stands for the North & Central America and Caribbean Confederation, and is one of five continental confederations within the Federation Internationale de Volleyball (FIVB).
Every two years the volleyball confederations celebrate their continental senior championships, and 2013 offers the next opportunity for Canada's men's team to compete for continental supremacy.
The event will not only determine the newest continental champion and provide valuable world ranking points, but will reward the winner of the event with a berth into the 2013 FIVB Grand Champions Cup to be held later that fall in Japan.
The Grand Champions Cup offers $1 million in prize money to the teams and athlete award winners.
"On behalf of the Township of Langley, we are extremely excited to be hosting yet another major international event at the Langley Events Centre," Langley Township Mayor Jack Froese said. "The facility continues to attract world class events and the 2013 NORCECA Continental Championship for men's volleyball will be yet another that showcases the facility and the Township of Langley to the world."
LEC director of business development Jared Harman said the tournament is another great opportunity to see the best the world has to offer in volleyball, at the senior men's level.
"Being able to feature Olympic-level volleyball and having the chance to work with Volleyball BC, Volleyball Canada and NORCECA again will ensure another exciting event for our calendar," Harman said.
Hosting the Pan Am Cup is proof to Volleyball Canada and NORCECA that the LEC is capable of hosting an event of this magnitude, Vollleyball Canada president Hugh Wong said.
"The host committee along with Volleyball BC, the venue staff, and numerous volunteers have been excellent," Wong said. "A lot of work goes into the organization and delivery of these events, and we anticipate that given one year to plan and promote_, next year's NORCECA men's championship will exceed expectations, and we look forward to great crowds coming from throughout B.C. to cheer on our national team."