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Québec Open Jeep 2011 | Women
  19/07/2011 - 24/07/2011

Cook rejoins former partner Hinchley

Australia's Natalie Cook has rejoined Tamsin Hinchley, her partner for the 2008 Beijing Olympic Games
Melbourne, Australia, July 21, 2011 – Australia’s Natalie Cook has split with her beach volleyball partner Tara West to reunite with Tamsin Hinchley in a change her coach Steve Tutton believes will give her the best chance of reaching a history-making fifth Olympic Games.

Cook teamed up with West in January and the pair competed at FIVB Beach Volleyball Swatch World Tour events in China and Europe over the past few weeks.

But she's rejoined her 2008 Beijing Olympic Games teammate Hinchley as she tries to become the first Australian woman to participate in five summer Olympics.

West, a former Australian indoor volleyball captain, suspended her university studies in Perth and relocated to Brisbane in January to begin an intensive training program with the experienced Cook - who with Kerri Pottharst won bronze at the 1996 Atlanta Games and gold in Sydney 2000.

But with Olympic qualification at stake, Tutton believes the proven cohesion Cook and Hinchley have as a duo will stand them in better stead on the road to London 2012.

"They've gone through an Olympic qualifying campaign as a team already," said Tutton from the World Tour event in Moscow.

"They have some experience together as a team and, this time around, their preparation has been a lot better in terms of being ready to compete at the world level again."

"They've had a good 18 months now under their belt getting ready to compete."

There, they'll begin their quest to accumulate crucial ranking points, with the top 16 teams gaining direct qualification for London.

"I'm expecting that they will have some pretty strong performances," Tutton said.

"If they post some top four or five results in the events they compete in from now, I think they'll qualify in their own right."

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