Women's competition, Rhodes
From 19 May To 23 May 2004

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German duo must plan ahead after Hellas exit
Rhodes, Greece, May 21, 2004 - Little went right for German pair Stephanie Pohl and Okka Rau on Friday as they exited the 2004 Swatch - FIVB Hellas Open on a scorching day in Rhodes.

Suffering a surprise defeat to German giant killers Andrea Ahmann and Jana Vollmer in a marathon match early in the day meant that team Pohl-Rau entered their second game against Greece's best, Vasso Karadassiou and Efi Sfyri, who also went down in their first game. And,in a centre court thriller, Pohl and Rau just couldn't muster the spark they needed as they lost again, this time by 2-0.

With the first set swinging back and forth, fans inside the arena were constantly jumping to their feet, screaming and cheering each side on. Karadassiou and Sfyri were elated at the end with a 23-21 triumph. Spirits broken by that stage, Pohl and Rau eventually succumbed to a 21-12 second set loss. The Germans must now prepare themselves for the tough challenge that awaits when the Swatch - FIVB World Tour moves on to Shanghai, China on May 26.

For the aforementioned Ahmann and Vollmer, things just keep getting better. Following their morning win over compatriots Pohl and Rau, team Ahmann-Vollmer overcame Virginie Kadjo and Ethel-Junie Arjona of France by 2-1 to advance through the draw where they have been rewarded with an enticing encounter with top seeds Kerri Walsh and Misty May of the USA on Saturday.

Another big team to suffer a high profile loss on Friday was the Dutch outfit Marrit Leenstra and Rebekka Kadjiik who were beaten by Brazilians Renata Ribeiro and Kelly Shaylyn in a three-setter.