Men's Olympic Games, Athens GREECE
From 14 August To 25 August 2004

Menu Olympics
Women Home
Men Home
General Info
Schedule & Results
Match Reports
Pool Standings
Overall Ranking
Photo Gallery
Press Releases
Athens 2004 Olympic Men's Beach Volleyball Competition Starts Saturday
Athens, Greece, August 12, 2004 - The men's Olympic Beach Volleyball competition at the Athens 2004 Games begin here Saturday as the 24-team field participates in a technical meeting Friday at the Olympic Beach Volleyball Centre in the municipality of Kallithea within the Faliro Coastal Zone Olympic Complex.

The first six days of competition features six pools of four teams each to determine the 16-team single-elimination bracket. The men's completion concludes August 25 with the medal matches as the United States' Dain Blanton is in the field after winning the Sydney 2000 Olympic gold medal with Eric Fonoimoana.

Jeff Nygaard, a 1996 and 2000 Indoor Olympian for the United States, is Blanton's partner for Athens. Fonoimoana finished fourth on the United States Olympic ranking this time with Kevin Wong as Dax Holdren and Stein Metzger secured the No. 2 American spot by edging Todd Rogers and Sean Scott.

Emanuel Rego and Ricardo Santos of Brazil are the top-seeded men's team and will play Sunday's final match at 11 p.m. against Iver Horrem and Bjorn Maaseide of Norway. Ricardo won the silver medal at the Sydney 2000 Games with Ze Marco de Melo as the pair dropped the final match to Blanton and Fonoimoana.

The Brazilians have won 11 gold medals in 22 starts together on the SWATCH-FIVB World Tour since teaming together for the first time at the end of the 2002 season. Emanuel and Ricardo have posted a 60-10 match mark this season with six titles and $249,500 in winnings.

Brazil also has the second-seeded team in the in the competition with Benjamin Insfran and Marcio Araujo, who have won eight titles on the SWATCH-FIVB World Tour. Markus Dieckmann and Jonas Reckermann of Germany are seeded fourth between two teams from Switzerland.

On the strength of two late medal finishes in Germany and Mallorca, the Swiss Laciga brothers (Martin and Paul) earned the No. 3-seed in the competition as Stephen Kobel's calf injury prevented him from playing in the final two Olympic qualifying events with Patrick Heuscher as the pair finished as the fifth-ranked team on the Athens list.

The only change in Olympic field for Athens was the withdrawal Wednesday by Clemens Doppler of Austria, who injured his left knee injury three weeks ago in France. Doppler's Olympic-qualifying partner Nikolas Berger will play with Florian Gosch.

Mariano Baracetti and Martin Conde, the 2001 FIVB World Champions, headline Pool F along with Joao Brenha and Luis Maia of Portugal, who have finished fourth in both the 1996 and 2000 Olympic Games. Due to Brenha's broken left ankle, the Portuguese have played in only two events this season.

Canadians John Child and Mark Heese, who defeated Brenha and Maia for the bronze in the 1996 Atlanta Games, return for their third Olympics. Child and Heese, who has been hampered this year with knee problems, placed fifth in Sydney.

1996 Atlanta Olympic Games

Gold Medal - Karch Kiraly/Kent Steffes, USA def. Mike Dodd/Mike Whitmarsh, USA, 12-8 and 12-5 (62 minutes)
Bronze Medal - John Child/Mark Heese, Canada def. Joao Brenha/Luis Maia, Portugal, 12-5 and 12-8 (77)

Sydney 2000 Olympic Games

Men's Gold Medal - Dain Blanton/Eric Fonoimoana, United States def. Ze Marco de Melo/Ricardo Santos, Brazil, 12-11 and 12-9 (101)
Bronze Medal - Jorg Ahmann/Axel Hager, Germany def. Joao Brenha/Luis Maia, Portugal, 12-9 and 12-6 (70)