Wednesday, 29 May 2024

Race for Tokyo Reignites in Doha

COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. (March 5, 2021) – The excitement continues to build as beach volleyball teams from around the world gear up for the Katara Cup, a highly anticipated four-star tournament in Doha, Qatar. This event marks a crucial moment in the race toward qualification for the Tokyo Olympic Games, with teams vying for a chance to secure their spot on the prestigious Olympic stage.

USA Volleyball Teams Set to Compete

USA Volleyball will be well-represented at the Katara Cup, with four teams competing in both the women’s and men’s events. These teams are made up of some of the top talent in American beach volleyball, each aiming to secure their place on the Olympic roster.

Women’s Teams:

  • Alix Klineman/April Ross – Second overall in Olympic Rankings; 8,760 qualifying points
  • Brooke Sweat/Kerri Walsh Jennings – Fifth in Olympic Rankings; 6,960 points
  • Kelly Claes/Sarah Sponcil – Eighth in Olympic Rankings; 6,640 points
  • Emily Stockman/Kelley Kolinske – 10th in Olympic Rankings; 6,080 points

Men’s Teams:

  • Taylor Crabb/Jake Gibb – Eighth overall in Olympic Rankings; 6,680 points
  • Nick Lucena/Phil Dalhausser – 18th in Olympic Rankings; 5,840 points
  • Casey Patterson/Chase Budinger – 49th in Olympic Rankings, 2,600 points
  • Chaim Schalk/Theo Brunner – Unranked in Olympic Rankings, 0 points
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Intense Competition for Olympic Qualification

The winners of the Katara Cup will not only claim victory in this prestigious tournament but will also earn 800 points toward Olympic qualification for the Tokyo Games. These points play a crucial role in determining which teams will secure their spots on the Olympic roster.

The race for Olympic qualification is particularly intense among the U.S. Beach National Teams. The two highest-ranked American duos in the Olympic Rankings will earn a berth in Tokyo if they are within the top 15. Fortunately, all four female Katara Cup pairs are currently within this range.

Alix Klineman and April Ross are in a strong position, virtually securing their Olympic berth. However, the race for the second U.S. berth remains tight, with the three other pairs competing in Doha giving it their all.

On the men’s side, Taylor Crabb and Jake Gibb are currently in a qualifying spot. Nick Lucena and Phil Dalhausser also have a chance to secure a spot if they perform well in the tournament and surpass the team of Trevor Crabb and Tri Bourne, who currently hold the 11th spot in the Olympic Rankings with 6,360 points. Lucena and Dalhausser would need to finish in fourth place or better to close the 520-point gap between them and Crabb/Bourne.

Introducing the Katara Cup Participants

While Trevor Crabb and Tri Bourne narrowly missed out on securing a spot in Doha, the teams of Budinger/Patterson, Claes/Sponcil, and Brunner/Schalk successfully qualified via the country quota qualifier. These three teams will compete in the Katara Cup qualification round, aiming to advance to the tournament’s main draw.

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Teams such as Klineman/Ross, Sweat/Walsh Jennings, Stockman/Kolinske, Ta. Crabb/Gibb, and Lucena/Dalhausser have already secured their place in the tournament’s main draw.

Get Ready for the Katara Cup

The excitement begins on Monday, March 8, with the qualification round setting the stage for the tournament. As teams from around the world compete for their chance to represent their countries in the Tokyo Olympics, the Katara Cup promises to be a thrilling event filled with fierce competition and unparalleled skill.


  1. When does the Katara Cup begin?
    The Katara Cup starts on Monday, March 8, with the qualification round.

  2. How many teams will represent the USA?
    USA Volleyball will field four teams in both the women’s and men’s events.

  3. How are Olympic qualification points awarded?
    The winners of the Katara Cup will receive 800 points, with points decreasing by 80 for each of the top five spots and at certain intervals.


The race toward Olympic qualification reaches new heights at the Katara Cup in Doha. With top beach volleyball teams from around the world competing for their chance to secure a spot in the Tokyo Olympic Games, the stakes are high and the competition is fierce. Stay tuned for thrilling matches and captivating performances as the journey to Tokyo continues. For more information and updates, visit Alpinetgheep.