Women's Brazil Open 2004
Fortaleza, March 09 - 14

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Brazilian, USA Teams Advance From Country Quota Playoffs
FORTALEZA, BRAZIL, March 9, 2004 - Three teams from Brazil joined top-seeded Carrie Busch and Nancy Mason of the United States as Tuesday's earlier winners from the country quota matches in the 2004 SWATCH-FIVB World Tour season opener on Praia de Iracema.

Advancing from the seven-team Brazilian country quota round were fifth-seeded Talita Rocha and Tatiana Minello, 15th-seeded Juliana Felisberta Silva and Larissa Franca, 22nd-seeded Ana Richa and Vanilda Santos Leão. The teams of Felisberta Silva/Franca and Ana Richa/Leão won both of their country quota matches while Rocha and Minello won two of three country quota matches.

The 34-team Qualification Tournament concludes Wednesday when eight teams advance to the Main Draw. With 13 of the 16 top-ranked women's teams from the 2003 season expected to compete, the 32-team double-elimination Main Draw starts Thursday with the final four teams advancing to Saturday's semi-final matches. The medal matches will be played Sunday where the Gold Medal team wins the $27,000 first-place prize.

Busch and Mason opened with a 21-14 and 21-19 win over 34th-seeded Paula Roca and Garcie Santana before out-lasting 18th-seeded Barbra Fontana and Jennifer Kessy 22-20 and 21-17 in the hot and humid weather in the capital of the north eastern Brazilian state of Ceara.

"This is our first match together in several years," said Mason, who is playing with Busch for the first-time since an international event in Brazil in 2000. "We felt we were in better condition against Fontana and Kessy. I think they were cramping up early in the match. We also were able to score better in the second game while being able to side-out consistently."

Fontana, who placed fourth in the 1996 Atlanta Olympic Games with Linda Hanley, was playing in her first international match outside of the United States since giving birth to a boy (Lucas) 10 months ago. "We were cramping a lot in the second game of the final match. We just couldn't run down any balls at the start of the second game due to our cramping."

Tuesday's country quota matches were hard for the 37-year old Ana Richa, who is playing with SWATCH-FIVB World Tour rookie Leão. "Qualifying is hard, but the Brazilian country quota matches are even harder," said Ana Richa. Thankfully, we were able to prevail, but we better have some gas left in the tank since this is only the first step."

Rocha and Minello, who were upset earlier in the day by Felisberta Silva and Franca 21-19, 14-21 and 15-11, advanced to the Qualification Tournament's single-elimination bracket by ousting second-seeded Alexandra Fonseca and Mônica Rodrigues 21-19 and 21-19 in the final country quota match. Alexandra and Mônica were also upset in an earlier match by Ana Richa and Leão 21-19 and 21-12.

The US$180,000 Brazilian Open continues the qualifying process for the 2004 Athens Olympic Games. The process began last June in Greece and concludes July 11 when the 24 teams are determined for the August 14-24 Olympic Games in Athens. After this week's event, competition on the women's SWATCH-FIVB World Tour resumes May 19-23 in Rhodes, Greece followed by other Olympic qualifying events in China, Japan, Switzerland, Germany, Norway and Canada.
Press releases
Date Press release
14-Mar-2004 USA's May & Walsh Net Brazilian Open Gold Beach Volleyball Medal
14-Mar-2004 May y Walsh de EE UU se llevan oro en Abierto de Brasil
14-Mar-2004 Larissa & Juliana Snare Brazilian Open Bronze Beach Volleyball Medal
14-Mar-2004 Larissa y Juliana ganan medalla de bronce en el Abierto Brasileño de Voleibol de Playa
13-Mar-2004 Brazil's Shelda & Adriana Face USA's May & Walsh For Brazilian Gold
13-Mar-2004 Brasileñas Shelda y Adriana enfrentarán a May y Walsh de EE UU por el oro del Abierto de Brasil
13-Mar-2004 USA's May & Walsh Advance To Gold Medal Match
12-Mar-2004 USA & China Tandems Seek SWATCH Medals Against Brazilian Teams
12-Mar-2004 Duplas de EE UU y China por medallas SWATCH ante equipos brasileños
12-Mar-2004 Brazil & USA Advance First Two Teams To Semi-finals
12-Mar-2004 Brazilians Upset China Tandem in Friday's Beach Volleyball Opener
11-Mar-2004 USA's Davis & Johnson Jordan Survive Thursday's Elimination Matches
11-Mar-2004 Davis y Johnson Jordan de EE UU sobreviven a eliminatoria del jueves
11-Mar-2004 Brazil & USA Teams Lead Thursday's Winners
11-Mar-2004 Brazil's Larissa & Felisberta Silva Notch Upset Beach Volleyball Win
10-Mar-2004 Eight Countries Earn Beach Volleyball Main Draw Berths
10-Mar-2004 Ocho países logran entrar al Cuadro Principal de Voleibol de Playa
09-Mar-2004 For Team Australia, It Is Not Just Another Event
09-Mar-2004 Brazilian, USA Teams Advance From Country Quota Playoffs
09-Mar-2004 34-team Qualifier Opens SWATCH-FIVB World Tour Stop in Fortaleza
09-Mar-2004 Clasificatorio de 34 equipos abre el Circuito Mundial SWATCH-FIVB en Fortaleza
08-Mar-2004 Pottharst Back for Summer
08-Mar-2004 Circuito Mundial Swatch-FIVB Pottharst está de vuelta
04-Mar-2004 Fortaleza kick starts countdown to the Olympics
04-Mar-2004 Circuito Mundial Swatch-FIVB Fortaleza inicia cuenta regresiva para Juegos Olímpicos

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