30 Reasons To Watch: #28

Will Misty May-Treanor and Kerri Walsh, the pioneers of women’s beach volleyball, go unbeaten for the 3rd straight Olympics? And possibly head into retirement with a third gold? Will some players opt out of the two-piece bathing suit for something less beach-like?

(Photo by Jamie Squire/Getty Images)

By Mike Tierney, Special to Universal Sports

Life is good, Misty May-Treanor and Kerri Walsh acknowledge after all these years, when you spend your work day in a bikini and feel warm sand beneath your bare feet.

Each quadrennium, life tends to become great for the most decorated Olympic beach volleyball partners ever. They will slap on the sunscreen in London as a contender for their third consecutive gold medal. The American duo has risen to a No. 3 ranking worldwide after having dealt with the birth of Walsh’s two children, May-Treanor’s torn Achilles and a temporary breakup that ended with a heart-to-heart and a reunion.

Creeping middle age has not meant increased modesty for the 30-somethings, who will continue to wear the two-pieces despite a relaxing of beach volleyball rules in London that allow shorts in deference to nations with a conservative dress culture for women. To these two, the bikini is a uniform to which they have grown accustomed. Don’t mess with success — on land, at sea or, in their case, the sand that separates the two.

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