Birmingham Commonwealth Games: Kiwi volleyballers relish city-based beach in quest for gold

From the Gold Coast to Birmingham, Beach Volleyball is making its second straight appearance at the Games.

So too are the Kiwi athletes competing in the sport - namely men's pair Sam O'Dea and Brad Fuller, and women Shaunna Polley and Alice Zeimann - who are actually looking forward to a change of scenery.

Four years ago, beach volleyball debuted as a Commonwealth Games sport on the Gold Coast, but England's Birmingham is more brick than beach.

"We wouldn’t mind a few degrees hotter," Polley told Newshub.

That means the land-locked city has had to get creative, building a readymade beach for competition.

"We really like city venues because it’s super busy and there's usually really big crowds," said Zeimann. "Whereas on the beach, everyone’s chilling and on [vacation].

This is certainly no holiday for Kiwi men Sam O'Dea and Brad Fuller.

"From the moment we got together, we said we wanted to get gold at the Commonwealth Games, so that’s always been in the back of our minds," said Fuller.

For Shauna Polley, her shot at redemption has been long-awaited, after she was knocked out early in 2018.

"I have some unfinished business and have wanted to come back since and get on the podium," said Polley.

Join us for live updates of the Birmigham Commonwealth Games, starting Friday