Ningbo, China, August 28, 2010 – The FIVB World Grand Prix Council meeting was held in Ningbo here on Saturday with attendance of FIVB President Jizhong Wei and WGP Council President Mr. Masao Tachiki.
World Grand Prix Council members have reached agreement on the reform of enlarging World Grand Prix participations from 12 teams to 16 and the recommendation will be put forward to the FIVB Board of Administration meeting in Rome on September 7 for final approval.
“We would like to increase teams participating in FIVB World Grand Prix because there are more and more strong teams in the world,” Mr. Wei said. “We want to provide more opportunities for the teams who can play high level Volleyball.”
“You can see from the Final Round in Ningbo that the competitions are really close and many matches were fought to five sets,” he added.
With larger participation in the preliminary rounds, the number of teams for the Final Round will be increased from six to eight as well.
The FIVB World Grand Prix Council has also agreed on the distribution of berths in the World Grand Prix preliminaries. Five teams from Europe, three from Norceca, two from South America and Brazil will be in contention as well as four teams from Asia and the winner of a play-off between the fifth Asian qualifier and an All-African team.
“African men’s teams have improved very fast through participation in the World League, I think now we should give some opportunity to African women’s teams,” Mr. Wei explained.
Poland, Japan, China, USA, Dominican Republic, Cuba, Peru, Argentina, Brazil have already secured their tickets in World Grand Prix 2011 with the other berths to be decided in respective qualification tournaments.
The first round of competition for the 2011 FIVB World Grand Prix will be staged in Asia, Europe and America from August 5 to 21 with the Finals scheduled for August 24 to 28 in Macau, China.