< p class="sc-v64krj-0 dlqbmr">Until Sunday, nearly 800 games will be played in the various gymnasiums of the city of Sept-Îles. (File photo)
After a three-year hiatus due to the pandemic, the Orange Sept-Îles Volleyball Tournament is back in business. For this 42nd tournament, the organization recorded a record participation with just over 430 teams in contention.
Until Sunday, nearly 800 games will be played in the various gymnasiums of the city of Sept-Îles. According to the chairman of the Orange Tournament organizing committee, Jeannot Vich, the return of the tournament was eagerly awaited by the approximately 3,500 participants. The latter notes that the event is more popular than ever.
“We are at 432 teams, 53 in the mini-volleyball category and 379 in the regular section. »
— Jeannot Vich, President of the Organizing Committee of the Orange Tournament
We didn't expect to have a record number of teams, we thought it was going to start again, but in a more gradual way. We knew that the people of Sept-Îles were looking forward to it, but of all the participants, at least half are from outside, he underlines.
The president of the organizing committee of the Sept-Îles Orange volleyball tournament, Jeannot Vich
To ensure the holding of this competition, many volunteers and partners help the organization. We still have issues with volunteers, collaborators, but we are ready to make an exceptional tournament again this year, maintains Jeannot Vich.
Victim of his popularity, the organization's room for maneuver is slim in terms of modifying game schedules. Even before the first match, the schedules had to be rearranged since the train that was to transport the teams from the Lower North Shore has to undergo maintenance work.
All sports facilities in Sept-Îles are used during the Orange Volleyball Tournament. (File photo)
It's a 12-hour train journey. The teams were to leave Thursday morning, but finally the train will take off only Friday around 7 a.m. We had scheduled games in the early evening for these people. We must therefore review the entire schedule to successfully move these matches. We don't have an empty slot to easily move the matches, explains Jeannot Vich.
Despite the challenges, the latter expects a tournament out of the ordinary. We expect lots of smiles and a festive turnout. It's the biggest event in Sept-Îles and one of the biggest in Canada, he recalls.
The tournament is being held from May 4 to 7, a first meeting since 2019.