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 Press Release
Sri Lanka ready to host Asian Central Zonal tournament of the Continental Cup

The men’s and women’s teams from India, Kazakhstan, Iran, Maldives and Sri Lanka will battle out for the three tickets of the AVC Central Zone to the finals of the Asian Continental Cup

Negombo, Sri Lanka, January 18, 2011 – Sri Lanka is ready to host the Asian Central Zonal tournament of the AVC Beach Volleyball Continental Cup on January 20 to 22 as the qualification competition for the London 2012 Olympic Games continues in Asia.

The men’s and women’s teams from India, Kazakhstan, Iran, Maldives and Sri Lanka will battle out for the three tickets of the AVC Central Zone to the finals of the Asian Continental Cup.

The event is the first time that this kind of a tournament is being hosted in Sri Lanka. The event starts at 8am and the last match will be at 5.30pm on thecompetition both days.

In the men’s competition, the team of Iran is considered the top favorite to win the gold medal after they beat Kazakhstan 3-1 in Pool B of the AVC Continental Cup Central Asia Sub-Zonal competition in Kish Island in March. The Iramian pair of Parviz Farrokhi and Aghamohammad Salagh of Iran also defeated Alexandr Dyachenko and Alexey Sidorenko of Kazkkhstan and eventually won the gold medal at the 2011 AVC Beach Volleyball Championships in December in China.

The host team of Sri Lanka want now to use the advantage of their excited spectators to secure one of the berths in their first ever continental championship to be held in their country. The high riding Beach Volleyball players of Sri Lanka dominated the Beach Volleyball segment of the first ever South Asian Beach Games with Mahesh Perera and Wasantha Ratnapala taking the gold medal and Pubudu Ekanayake and Sampath Peiris winning the silver.

Participating in the women’s tournament are teams from Kazakhstan, India, Maldives and host Sri Lanka. The team of Kazakhstan will be the highest favourite to clinch the top place as Tatyana Mashkova and Irina Tsimbalova finished second at the Asian Beach Volleyball Tour 2011 in Indonesia. At the 2011 Asian Beach Volleyball Championship Tatyana Mashkova/Irina Tsimbalova and Marina Pilipenko/Bakhtygul Samalikova placed ninth while Ceethika Lalani Kottunnage/Thakshila Appuhanilage and Sagari Bogahalanda/Nirosha Gunasimghe fromm Sri Lanka finished only 17th.

However, the host team may pose threats to Kazakhstan as their women players acclaimed their dominace of beach volleyball in the South Asian region by finishing top two at t South Asian Beach Games in October 2011.

This top three booking the tickets for the finals will join qualifiers from Eastern, South Eastern, Western and Oceania Zones to compete against each other with the eventually winners of that will earn a berth to the London Games while the two runners-ups move on to the FIVB Beach Volleyball World Cup.

The men’s team from Indonesia, Thailand and Vietnam of AVC South Eastern Zone, China, Japan and Hong Kong of Eastern Zone, and Oman, Bahrain and Qatar of AVC Western have already qualified for the Asian finals. The women team having entered the finals are Thailand, Vietnam and Indonesia of South Eastern Zone, China, Japan and Chinese Taipei of Eastern Zone.


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