Men's competition, Klagenfurt
From 28 July To 1 August 2004

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Men's Country Quota Action Features Austria, Brazil & Germany Teams
KLAGENFURT, AUSTRIA, July 28, 2004 - The men's Qualification Tournament for the A1 Grand Slam, presented by Nokia, opened here Wednesday with country quota matches being played for teams from host Austria, Brazil and Germany.

Austria has already placed three other teams in the Main Draw, including Robert Nowotny/Peter Gartmayer, Nikolas Berger/Florian Gosch and Felix Bläuel /Bernhard Strauss. The host country can place four other tandems in the 32-team Main Draw that starts Thursday in the US$540,000 A1 Grand Slam.

With the 16th-seeded Schroffeneggers (Paul and Thomas) receiving a bye, six other teams from Austria played off for three additional spots in the qualifier's elimination bracket that determines the last eight entries into the Main Draw.

Austrian teams advancing from the country quota playoffs to the SWATCH-FIVB World Tour Qualification Tournament elimination bracket are 27th-seeded Dietmar Maderböck/Andreas Mätzler, 28th-seeded Simon Nausch/Mario Steinöker and 28th-seeded Harald Dobeiner/Matthias Melllitzer.

Brazil had four teams competing in its country quota playoff with fifth-seeded Pará Ferreira and Pedro Cunha winning matches over ninth-seeded Paulo Emilio Silva and Fabio Magalhães (16-21, 21-18 and 15-11) and 15th-seeded Pedro Brazão and Marcello Duarte (17-21, 21-9 and 15-10) to advance. Prior to losing to Pará and Cunha, Brazão and Duarte eliminated top-seeded Fred Souza and Harley Marques 21-19 and 21-17.

In the Germany country quota match, 10th-seeded Julius Brink and Kjell Schnieder ousted 14th-seeded Jorg Ahmann and Axel Hager with a 21-18 and 21-17 win over the bronze medallists at the Sydney 2000 OIympic Games.

The A1 Grand Slam men's qualifier also features four teams that have qualified for the 2004 Athens Olympic Games, including second-seeded Bjorn Maaseide/Iver Horrem of Norway, fourth-seeded Raul Papaleo Perez/Ramon Hernandez, sixth-seeded Bjorn Berg/Simon Dahl and seventh-seeded Stephane Canet/Mathieu Hamel.

Also competing in the qualifier is Javier Bosma of Spain, who has qualified for the Athens Olympic Games with Pablo Herrera. With Herrera competing in another event this week, Bosma is playing Javier Luna. Bosma also competed in the 1996 and 2000 Olympic Games with different partners.

The A1 Grand Slam is the 13th of 14 events for men this season on the SWATCH-FIVB World Tour. The Men's Main Draw concludes Sunday when the winning team shares $41,000 for the first-place prize.