The West

Stifling heat will challenge the nation's best beach volleyballers at Scarborough today during the Perth leg of the Renault national series.

With the temperature tipped to top 37C, organisers scheduled a four-hour break from midday because of player welfare concerns.

Sand socks were worn yesterday for the first time in the series because of the scorching sand.

But the heat is unlikely to trouble Mullaloo's Cole Durant.

The lanky 21-year-old and his South Australian partner Sam Boehm, 24, Australia's second-ranked men's team, were edged by top seeds Chris McHugh and Isaac Kapa in the first two legs at Cronulla and Surfers Paradise.

"We are going to win this one," Durant said. "I think you are a bit more confident on your home beach."

Durant, who took up the sport only four years ago, said he and Boehm hoped to compete at the 2016 Rio Olympics.

"It is a pretty long road but it is fun and exciting the whole time," he said.

Durant and Boehm will continue their campaign in the round of 16 today before tomorrow's semis and grand final.

Women's top seeds Louise Bawden and Taliqua Clancy are favourites in their draw but second seeds Tara West (WA) and Mariafe Artacho del Solar (NSW) will be looking to end their dominant run.

Volleyball WA executive director Robyn Kuhl said the event was a great spectacle and a rare opportunity for local players to take on the best in Australia.

"Beach volleyball is just so quintessentially Australian and it is beautiful to watch," she said.

The West Australian

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