PRESS RELEASE 09.05.2004


USA and Cuba to play in Montreux

May 9, 2004 - Two squads from the NORCECA region will take part in the traditional Montreux Volley Masters, an annual women's tournament recognised by the FIVB to be celebrated in that Switzerland city from June 8-13.

USA and Cuba will be sending full squads to the event in preparation for the Pan American Cup, a qualifier for the 2005 World Grand Prix, hosted by the Mexican cities of Tijuana and Mexicali in Baja California on June 18-26.

In the preliminary round, the Americans will face teams from Italy, Japan and Poland, while the Cubans are joined by Russia, China and Germany. The two top teams of each pool advance to the next round and play crossed matches.

China, winner of last year's World Cup, is the defending champion after dethroning Russia in a five-set thriller in the final in 2003.

In last year's event, USA lost to Russia 2-3 in semifinals and Cuba did not make the second phase.

Cuban Yumilka Ruiz was the best spiker of the tournament while Americans Stacy Sykora and Logan Tom won the honors as best digger and receiver respectively.