King of the Court - Official Timekeeper
In 1915, beach volleyball, an evolution of indoor volleyball, was played for the first time on Waikiki Beach, Hawaii. As the sport’s popularity grew it was played in other parts of the world, most notably in Santa Monica, California which popularised the sport and gave birth to the modern two-player game. Today, beach volleyball is governed by the International Volleyball Federation, the FIVB and has been an Olympic sport since the summer of 1996.
Sportworx, a Dutch company, conceived the highly innovative King of the Court format (KOTC). Working in close cooperation with FIVB, KOTC holds Beach Volleyball tournaments in cities around the globe. Beyond the appeal of urban locations, KOTC has made the sport more accessible to fans by framing the courts with sky boxes, stadiums as well as ground-level seating. These formats allow spectators to get close to the action, augmenting the sense of tension and excitement.
The KOTC hosts 20 of the world’s finest male and volleyball teams from around the world, including ML Crew members the Beachvolley Vikings, AKA Anders Mol and Christian Sørum, and Swiss duo Joana Heidrich and Anouk Vergé-Dépré.
Stéphane Waser, Managing Director of Maurice Lacroix, stated, “Maurice Lacroix is the Official Timekeeper of KOTC and the reasons behind this partnership are numerous. Since the inaugural AIKON models were unveiled in 2016, Maurice Lacroix has repeatedly looked to the urban landscape for inspiration, creating watches for ambitious, driven individuals. Therefore, the notion of bringing sporting events to city centres immediately resonated with our brand.”
Wilco Nijland, CEO & founder of King of the Court adds: “Time is one of the key elements of our King of the Court sport discipline; it’s an elimination race in rounds of 15 minutes with the world’s best beach volleyball teams. With Maurice Lacroix we have, for us, the best possible watch brand on board for our very promising journey. The way Maurice Lacroix is approaching new and existing markets, with innovative watches, is very professional, ambitious, creative and brave. This fits so well with the vision and style of King of the Court. It’s great to feel that we are sharing so many of the same mutual brand values; this will be without any doubts recognized by each visitor of our platforms live or online!
Maurice Lacroix also appreciates how KOTC tries to make its experiences accessible, an attribute it shares with Maurice Lacroix, a luxury brand that is known for making affordable watches with a high perceived value. Perhaps, most of all, Maurice Lacroix chooses to work with partners who are driven and crave success. It is for this reason that Anders Mol & Christian Sørum and Joana Heidrich & Anouk Vergé Dépré were invited to join the ML Crew and likewise why Maurice Lacroix and KOTC have chosen to work together.
THIS IS KING OF THE COURT
Originally a popular training match format, King of the Court has developed into an exhilarating new beach volleyball format. The court is divided into a winning and challenging side, and points can only be scored on the winning side. Instead of two teams, there are five duos playing for time simultaneously in an elimination game. The break between the rallies is limited to eight seconds, ensuring a fast and action-packed game. The format of King of the Court is well suited to the IOC and Olympic Movement’s vision of attracting younger generations.
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