FIVB Beach Volleyball World Tour

Rio de Janeiro Open | 2 - 6 septembre 2015


Press release

Seeking experience on iconic Copacabana beach

Cole Durant (left) and Bo Soderberg talk about traveling over 8,000 miles from Australia to compete in the Rio Open next week.

Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, August 28, 2015 – Why would a Beach Volleyball team travel from Australia travel more than 8,000 miles (12,875 kilometers) with the prospects of playing only one match in next week’s Rio Open?

“That’s easy,” said 38-year old Bo Soderberg before a practice on iconic Copacabana beach with a new partner (Cole Durant) for a new country (Australia).  “The goal is to be part of the Olympic qualifying process for the Rio 2016 Olympic Games and play in the Continental Cup competition for Australia.”

For Soderberg, who played in his first FIVB World Tour event in 1999, and Durant, who started playing internationally in 2013, the Rio Open is worth the miles travel.  “It is about gaining experience in training and playing against the best Beach Volleyball players in the world,” said Soderberg.  “If we are fortunate to win our qualifying match, we can play a lot more games to gain the experience together.”

Soderberg has competed in 82 FIVB World Tour and 18 European continental events while playing for Denmark where he was an eighth-time national Beach Volleyball champion.  Living in South Australia for the past 11 years with his wife (Lauren Mcleod) and children, Soderberg has netted two national championships “down under”.

“After losing so many matches to Bo over the years, I am glad to be playing with him,” said the 23-year old Durant.  “Bo has been around the world many times competing against the best players for many years.  His experiences and knowledge will be a tremendous help.”

The US$150,000 Rio Open begins Wednesday (September 2) with qualifying matches for both men and women.  Eight pairs from each gender will advance to the 24-team Main Draws featuring the Olympic Beach Volleyball format of pool play and elimination matches.  Competition will be played at the same site where the Beach Volleyball stadium will be constructed for the Rio 2016 Olympic Games on Avenida Atlantica. across from the Windsor Altantica Hotel.

The Rio Open will be the first FIVB World Tour event held in the city since 2004 and the first international tournament since Copacabana hosted the 2005 under-21 FIVB World Championships.  Rio hosted the first-ever FIVB-sanctioned event in 1987 with the Brazilian city previously hosting 14 men’s and seven women’s world tour stops.

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Seeking experience on iconic Copacabana beach