Tokyo, Japan, August 22, 2009 –
The annual FIVB World Grand Prix Council Meeting was held at the Hyatt
Regency Tokyo on Saturday, with FIVB’s President Mr. Wei Jizhong
presiding as the guest of honour.
Chaired by the Council President
Mr Masao Tachiki, himself the JVA’s president, the one-day meeting was
also joined by Mrs Gabrielle van Zwieten, FIVB Vice-Director Volleyball
Events, Mr Shanrit Wongprasert, WGP Technical Delegate, Mr Mohammad
Hassan, WGP Refereeing Delegate and Council members from China, Hong
Kong, Macau, Japan, Korea, Poland and Thailand.
President Wei admitted in the
meeting that the marketing promotion of this year’s WGP and WL was not
successful due to the lack of official sponsors.
According to the FIVB’s rules
and regulations, the importance of National Federations, he said, is
always the FIVB’s top priority, while female referees will get full
supports from the world’s volleyball-governing body to take charge in
the women’s tournaments.
President Wei added that at
least one female referee should stand a chance in taking charge in each
pool play of the WGP preliminaries and possible two will be responsible
in the Final Round. The main challenge is to achieve around 60 per cent
of female referees in the 2012 London Olympics.
As for the 2010 World Grand
Prix, USA already expressed intention to host a first-week
preliminaries pool competition, while 12 teams including four from
Asia, four from Europe and four from North/South America remain the
limited amount to test their mettle in the preliminaries next August.
The first-week pool plays of
next year’s WGP is scheduled to kick off from August 6 to 8, with the
following two weeks being held between August 13 and 15 and from August
20 to 22 respectively. The Final Round in Ningbo, China is due to take
place between August 25 and 29. The schedule for the 2010 World Grand
Prix will be finalized after the last teams qualify (September 2009).
Aside from Ningbo in 2010, the
host city for the Final Round in 2011 will be Macau, while the 2012
edition is expected to take place in Europe to alleviate the distant
journey of the participating teams to the London Games.