PRESS RELEASE 30.10.2004


Defending champion Italy faces Russia in preliminary round

Belgrade, October 30, 2004 - Defending men's European Volleyball champion and Olympic silver medallist Italy will meet Olympic bronze medallist Russia in the preliminary phase of the Men's European Championship 2005. This was one of the most significant outcomes of the drawing of lots carried out here in the Royal Palace of Belgrade (SCG) on Saturday Oct. 30. The most important European Volleyball competition will take place from 2 - 11 September 2005 in Belgrade (SCG) and Rome (ITA).

Italy and Russia were drawn into Pool I which will be played in Rome, Italy. It will be a tough group for the defending champion, because Poland, besides Russia, is also a strong candidate for the Final Four. Croatia, Ukraine and Portugal complete this group.

Co-host and 2001 European champion Serbia & Montenegro will play in Pool II, supported by their home crowd in Belgrade during the preliminary phase. The 2000 Olympic Champions will face France as one of their major opponents. 1997 European Champion Netherlands, 2004 European League winner Czech Republic, Spain and Greece are the other teams drawn into this group.

The Drawing of Lots which was carried out under the supervision of CEV President Mr. Andre Meyer marked the official start of the Final Round of the Men's Senior European Championship. Many honorary guests including the Lord Mayor of Rome Mr. Walter Veltroni, the Lord Mayor of Belgrade Mr. Nenad Bogdanovic, Italian Federation President and CEV Vice-President Mr. Carlo Magri, Serbia Montenegrin Federation President and CEV Vice-President Alexandar Boricic and CEV Vice President Dr. Jan Hronek, representatives of the National Federations as well as media from all over Europe were present in Belgrade on Saturday.

The first two ranked teams of each preliminary pool will be qualified for the semifinals which will be played in Rome on 10 September 2005. As the Men's European Championship is being played in two different countries there will be no classification matches for places five until eight. The final is scheduled for Sunday 11 September 2005 in Rome.

The match schedule will be released at the latest on 15 November after confirmation of the CEV and TV partners.

Men's 2005Senior European Championship

Results Drawing of Lots.

Pool I, Rome: Italy, Russia, Poland, Croatia, Ukraine and Portugal

Pool II, Belgrade:

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