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2016-06-06 09:00:00 CET

Hello from Hamburg!

Greetings from Germany, the smart Major Hamburg is almost upon us

Are you ready? We are, we can’t wait and we’d love it if you could join us this week! Are you ready? We are, we can’t wait and we’d love it if you could join us this week!

Good morning! Finally, the day we thought would never come! It’s Monday and we’re in Hamburg for our first Major of the summer: the smart Major Hamburg.

A lot of blood, sweat and tears have already gone into making this hugely-anticipated week a reality…and the players haven’t even volleyed a Mikasa over the net yet.

So what will you expect over the next six days? In a nutshell, 64 of the world’s best beach volleyball teams will go head-to-head, aiming for a spot on the podium, while scrapping to gain all-important Olympic ranking points for the last time before Rio. Oh, and then there’s a mouth-watering $800,000 in prize money to get a piece of.

But before all of that, though, there’s plenty still to sort out. Today the match referees have their theoretical and practical clinics and the courts are checked to ensure they are all in order. Later on this evening the draw for the qualification round is made.

Tomorrow we’ll then squeeze 48 qualification matches into 10 hours of fast-paced, cut-throat action on the sand, starting at 08:00 and ending at 18:00 CET. Come the end of the day we will know the identity of the 16 teams joining the 48 automatic main draw entrants.

And that, ladies and gentleman, signals the true start of the tournament, as two days of Pool Play leads us through to the knock-out rounds before the women’s final on Saturday and the men’s showpiece on Sunday. Before you know it a week will flash before your very eyes and we’ll be wondering where the time went.

If you’re looking for a more detailed look at the structure of this week’s schedule, look no further than this article we pieced together right here.

Right, we’re off to type up some more news for you – so don’t go anywhere. In the meantime, it might be a good idea if you sign your good selves up to our social media accounts, just so you don’t miss any of the action as and when it happens. Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, YouTube, and now Snapchat (@swatchmajors) and Periscope (@SwatchMajors) , we’ve got it all!

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