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  Porto Santo  2006   Women's Open
14.09.2006 -  17.09.2006


Porto Santo Hosts Inaugural SWATCH-FIVB World Tour Women’s Event

Lausanne, Switzerland, September 11, 2006 - After a week off, the SWATCH-FIVB World Tour resumes play with the US$200,000 Porto Santo Line/TMN Open for women as the island in the Madeira Archipelagos hosts an international Beach Volleyball event for the third-straight year.

Porto Santo Island, with a population close to 5,000, staged the 2004 men’s and women’s SWATCH-FIVB World Championships for players under 21 before hosting a men’s Challenger event in 2005.  Both tournaments were headquartered at a 5,000-seat Beach Volleyball-friendly facility on the Atlantic Ocean.

The teams of Miguel Angel Amo/Inocencio Lario of Spain and Taiana Lima/Carolina Salgado of Brazil captured the 2004 SWATCH-FIVB U-21 World Championships in Porto Santo before Jorre Kjemperud and Tarjei Skarlund claimed the 2005 men’s FIVB Challenger title.

At the last women’s SWATCH-FIVB World Tour event in Poland two weeks ago, Tian Jia and Wang Jie won their second-straight international Beach Volleyball gold medal by defeating Xue Chen and Zhang Xi 22-20 and 21-17 in the All-Chinese final in Warsaw.

Tian Jia and Wang Jie still maintain a “slim” chance for the 2006 SWATCH-FIVB World Tour points title.  With top-ranked Juliana Felisberta Silva and Larissa Franca of Brazil skipping the inaugural Warsaw women’s event, Tian Jian and Wang Jie have now completed 11 SWATCH events this season to compile 5,340 points.

Juliana and Larissa, who have posted 6,340 points for 10 events, must finish at least 17th in one of the four remaining women’s events to clinch their second-straight SWATCH season points title.  Tian Jia and Wang Jie’s only hope is to win the last four gold medals and hope that the Brazilians can’t place higher at 25th in any of the SWATCH stops in the Porto Santo, Brazil, Mexico or Thailand.

The 2006 SWATCH-FIVB World Tour champions for men and women will be determined by calculating the points for a team’s best 10 finishes for men and the best 11 finishes for women based on 75 percent of the men’s (14) and women's (15) events staged this season and rounded down.

While the top competitors on the international tour were on break last week, the FIVB staged the world championships for players under the age of 19 in Bermuda.  Teams from Germany and Australia claimed the gold medals at the fifth annual SWATCH-FIVB U-19 World Championships at Horseshoe Bay where play concluded Saturday before the arrival of Tropical Storm Florence.

The teams of Jonathan Erdmann/Marvin Klass of Germany and Becchara Palmer/Alice Rohkamper of Australia each posted 7-0 match marks to capture the 2006 SWATCH-FIVB U-19 World Championships.  The second-seeded Erdmann and Klass won the 26-team men’s U-19 title chase by defeating 24th-seeded Francesco Giontella and Paolo Nicolai of Italy 21-18, 17-21 and 15-12.

The FIVB double gender event ended a day earlier than scheduled due to Tropical Storm Florence as the sixth-seeded Palmer and Rohkamper won the 21-team women U-19 event by defeating fourth-seeded Marleen Van Iersel and Danielle Remmers of the Netherlands 17-21, 21-19 and 15-11.

Double gender SWATCH-FIVB World Tour competition resumes at the end of September in Vitoria, Brazil, when the men resume international competition after a six-week break.  Reigning Olympic champions Emanuel Rego and Ricardo Santos won the men’s last SWATCH stop August 13 in Stare Jablonki, Poland.

PORTUGESE BEACH VOLLEYBALL BITS - As the 2006 SWATCH-FIVB World Tour season nears its end, Portugal ranked sixth in total international participations.  A total of 173 Portuguese players, including 107 men and 66 women, had competed in FIVB-sanctioned events entering the 2006 season.  The European country also ranks sixth (20) in FIVB events staged behind Brazil (49), France (37), Italy/San Marino (37), Switzerland (27) and Spain (22).  Portugal is one of 15 countries to have at least one team in each of the three Olympic Beach Volleyball competitions.  Three-time Olympians Joao Brenha and Miguel Maia missed medals at the 1996 and 2000 Summer Games with fourth-place finishes. The pair has won two SWATCH-FIVB World Tour events in 1998 (Ostende, Belgium) and 1999 (Moscow, Russia).  Brenha and Maia’s 116 SWATCH starts together ranks second all-time as the pair is 18th in career team earnings ($478,115).  Olympians Cristina Pereira and Maria Jose Schuller posted Portugal's best women's finish on the SWATCH-FIVB World Tour with a fourth at the 2000 Chinese Open in Dalian.  Pereira and Schuller competed in 52 SWATCH events together with $122,852 in earnings to currently rank 50th all-time.  The pair competed in seven events hosted by Portugal ($20,700 in combined earnings) with their best finish being a seventh in the 2000 Espinho stop.

Portugese Women - Juliana Antunes and Sandra Castro captured a FIVB Satellite event last month in Spain where they defeated Canada’s Anouk Boileau and Marie-Christine Mondor 21-14 and 21-18 in the 33-minute finale in Getxo.  Antunes and Castro have competed in three FIVB events together with a 4-5 match mark and $4,300 in winnings.  In 2005, Antunese and Castro placed 25th in the Portugese Open in Espinho followed by a 13th at the Swiss Satellite stop in Lausanne.

September 13-17, Porto Santo Open - After staging the SWATCH-FIVB U-21 World Championships in 2004 and a men’s FIVB challenger stop in 2005, the Madeira Island of Porto Santo stages the world’s best women’s players at its Beach Volleyball-friendly facility on the Portuguese isle off the coast of Africa.  The previous eight women's Portuguese Opens have been held in Espinho.

Year - Espinho Gold Medal / Espinho Silver Medal / Espinho Bronze Medal
1995 - Holly McPeak/Nancy Reno, USA / Linda Hanley/Angela Rock, USA / Sandra Pires/Jackie Silva, Brazil
1996 - Pires/Silva, Brazil / /Monica Rodrigues/Adriana Samuel, Brazil / Shelda Bede/Adriana Behar, Brazil
1997 - Samuel/Rodrigues, Brazil, Shelda/Adriana, Brazil / Pires/Silva, Brazil
1998 - Barbra Fontana/Hanley, USA / Pires/Samuel, Brazil / Reno/Elaine Youngs, USA
1999 - Annett Davis/Jenny Johnson Jordan, USA / Natalie Cook/Kerri Pottharst, Australia / Liz Masakayan/Elaine Youngs, USA
2000 - Masakayan/Youngs, USA / Arce/Fontana, USA / Cook/Pottharst, Australia
2001 - Misty May-Treanor/Kerri Walsh, USA / Shelda/Adriana, Brazil / Fontana/Youngs, USA
2005 - May-Treanor/Walsh, USA / Thalia Koutroumanidou/Maria Tsiartsiani, Greece / Juliana Felisberta Silva/Larissa Franca, BRA

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