Men's U21 Event 2004
PORTUGAL, Porto Santo

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Brazil, Germany, Latvia & Venezuela Advance in FIVB U-21 Worlds, but for others...
Porto Santo, Portugal, September 15, 2004 - For the record, Beach Volleyball teams from Brazil, Germany, Latvia and Venezuela advanced from Wednesday's men's Qualification Tournament to the Main Draw for the FIVB U-21 World Championships for players under 20 years old.

Joining top-seeded Ian Borges and Oscar Brandão of Brazil as Main Draw qualifiers for the opening pool play rounds Thursday in the 24-team Main Draw were second-seeded Tom Götz and Stefan Uhmann of Germany, sixth-seeded Valters Ramma and Toms Smedins of Latvia and 12th-seeded Cesar Castro and Farid Mussa of Venezuela.

But, for eight other tandems here at the new Beach Sports Stadium on Penedo do Sono, the results were "disappointing." And from the view of Ulric Svensson, Swedish National Beach Volleyball coach, Wednesday's competition was a start for his young tandem of Petter Jonsson and Mikael Renegard.

Seeded ninth in the 12-team qualifier, Jonsson and Renegard split a pair of matches Wednesday with a win over eighth-seeded Guido Mopman and Oscar Nuijten of the Netherlands and a 21-17 and 21-14 loss to Borges and Brandão.

"Not bad since we played two good teams," said Svensson, who has coached Sweden's Bjorn Berg and Simon Dahl to two-straight Olympics. "I would have not brought them here if I didn't think they could compete against the other teams. They showed by some heart today by coming back in their first match."

After edging Mopman and Nuijten 21-19 in the first set, the Swedes were routed in the second set 21-8 to force a third set that Jonsson and Renegard won 15-13. "It would be easy for Petter and Mikael to lose their confidence after getting beat pretty bad," Svensson noted. "They bounced back to get another opportunity to qualify for the Main Draw. The Brazilians were very good, but at least we did not get beat 21-8!"

Svensson, who is one of the more experienced coaches on the SWATCH-FIVB World Tour and also helps with television commentating, is one of the reasons for the growth of Beach Volleyball in Scandinavia. Berg and Dahl finished ninth in the Athens Olympics after being eliminated by silver medallists Javier Bosma and Pablo Herrera of Spain.

"We have more than 10,000 people that participate in Beach Volleyball in our country," Svensson added, "and we have about 1,400 that play competitively. Obviously, our biggest problem in developing players is the weather. We have some indoor facilities, but you need to gain the experience playing outdoors due to the changing weather conditions."

While Renegard will return to Sweden to play indoor Volleyball, Jonsson will join his brother Rasmus for training in Australia. "You complain about travelling," Svensson added, "but for a Beach Volleyball player from Sweden to be competitive internationally, he or she must spend eight-to-10 months on the road. It is not an easy assignment as you think."

While Jonsson and Renegard are eliminated from the competition, they will spend the next four days practicing. "This is a beautiful place that offers those weather variables the Coach was talking about," said Jonsson. "I am looking forward to travelling to Australia to gain some more experience."
Press releases
Date Press release
19-Sep-2004 Amo & Lario Net Spain's Second Men's FIVB U-21 World Championship
19-Sep-2004 Latvians & Spaniards Spoil Title Rematch Plans at Men's FIVB U-21 Worlds
18-Sep-2004 Brazil, Germany, Latvia & Spain Compete for Men's FIVB U-21 World Title
18-Sep-2004 Brazil & Latvia Headed for Men's FIVB U-21 World Championship "Final Four"
17-Sep-2004 Brazil & Germany Protect Men's FIVB U-21 World Championship Seeds
16-Sep-2004 Germany & Latvia Lead Men's FIVB U-21 World Championships
15-Sep-2004 Brazil, Germany, Latvia & Venezuela Advance in FIVB U-21 Worlds, but for others...

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