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FIVB BEACH VOLLEYBALL NEWS

Main draw field finalized from FIVB Long Beach Grand Slam qualifying

 
Norway's Victoria Kjolberg, left, and teammate Janne Kongshavn celebrate their three-set qualifying win Monday over Croatia to advance to the main draw at the FIVB Long Beach Grand Slam in Southern California.

Long Beach, Calif., USA, July 22, 2013—It was relatively short and it was very intense and when it finished eight men’s and eight women’s teams have advanced from Monday’s qualifying rounds to Tuesday’s start of the 32-team main draw at the $440,000 FIVB Long Beach Grand Slam double-gender tournament as the FIVB Beach Volleyball World Tour is back in the USA for the first time in a decade. Men’s teams advancing were two from Italy and one each from Austria, Brazil, Canada, Spain, Switzerland and the United States. For the women, moving forward to pool play were two women’s teams from Canada and one each from Austria, Brazil, Mexico, Norway, Poland and the United States advanced.

A total of 11 men’s and 12 women’s teams battled in the single-elimination qualification tournament Monday to determine the final eight spots in their respective 32-team main draw fields as the 2013 FIVB Beach Volleyball World Tour resumed in North America after a one-week layoff. Main Draw round-robin four-team pool play starts Tuesday morning. Pool Play will conclude with a single-elimination bracket for the final 24 teams. With the event being held for the first time in Long Beach the purpose-built site is located on the expansive glistening sands of Marina Green Park on East Lakeshore Drive.

Main Draw pool play matches at the FIVB Long Beach Grand Slam, presented by ASICS, are scheduled to start at 8:00 a.m. Tuesday on four courts with two rounds of action for women and one of three pool play matches for men. General admission is free to the event and VIP tickets are on sale through the event website at www.wsobv.com. The last match is scheduled to start on each of the four courts at 6 p.m. Tuesday.

Men’s teams advancing to the main draw ‘money rounds’ were Austria’s Peter Eglseer/Felix Koraimann, Brazil’s Vitor Felipe/Evandro Goncalves, Canada’s Grant O’Gorman/Sam Pedlow, Italy’s Gianluca Casadei/Paolo Ficosecco, Italy’s Alex Ranghieri/Andrea Tomatis, Spain’s Inocencio Lario/Javier Monfort, Switzerland’s Andreas Sutter/Roman Sutter and USA’s Nick Lucena/John Hyden.

For the women, the eight team’s advancing to the main draw on Monday were Austria’s Valerie Teufl/Elisabeth Klopf, Brazil’s Barbara Seixas/Liliane Maestrini, Canada’s Sarah Pavan/Heather Bansley, Canada’s Melissa Humana-Paredes/Taylor Pischke, Mexico’s Bibiana Candelas/Martha Revuelta, Norway’s Janne Kongshavn/Victoria Kjolberg, Poland’s Agnieszka Pregowska/Aleksandra Wolak and USA’s Emily Day/Summer Ross.

The FIVB Long Beach Grand Slam, presented by ASICS is the showcase part of the ASICS World Series of Beach Volleyball, a SoCal beach festival that includes 4-person and 6-person recreational events, a youth tournament and nightly music concerts. Also part of the event is the inaugural ASICS World Series Cup featuring two teams in each gender from the USA against two international teams with the finals next Sunday. In addition to the international live FIVB telecasts, the event also includes 23 hours of live or same-day telecasts split between NBC Sports Network, Universal Network and NBC TV Network. The teams selected for the ASICS World Series Cup will be officially announced on Tuesday.

The women’s semifinals and medal matches of the FIVB Long Beach Grand Slam will be held on Friday with the men’s semifinals also on Friday and medal matches closing the FIVB Long Beach Grand Slam on Saturday. Play Tuesday through Friday is scheduled to start at 8 a.m. and at 11 a.m. on Saturday for the men’s medal matches.

With a reduced number of teams in the qualifying tournament for both genders five of the men’s teams and four women’s teams advanced directly to the main draw without having to play a match on Monday. Those teams were determined based on their qualifying seeds. The three men’s teams who won a match on Monday to advance were Austria’s Eglseer/Koraimann, Italy’s Ranghieri/Tomatis and Switzerland’s Sutter brothers. The four women’s teams who advanced after winning their qualification match were Canada’s Humana-Paredes/Pischke, Mexico’s Candelas/Revuelta, Norway’s Kongshavn/Kjolberg and Poland’s Pregowska/Wolak.

Of the teams that played all won in two sets except Norway’s Kongshavn/Kjolberg for the women and Austria’s Eglseer/Koraimann for the men. Norway’s Kongshavn/Kjolberg defeated Croatia’s Dalida Vernier/Jurja Vlasi, 21-19, 14-21, 15-11 in 48 minutes while Austria’s Eglseer/Koraimann overcame Canada’s Simon Fecteau-Boutin/Ryan DeBruyn, 16-21, 30-28, 15-9 in 65 minutes, the longest match of the day.

As the host nation, the United States has four additional teams in each gender pre-positioned into the main draw. For the men, besides Lucena/Hyden, USA’s teams are Sean Rosenthal/Phil Dalhausser, Jake Gibb/Casey Patterson, Todd Rogers/Ryan Doherty and Stafford Slick/Casey Jennings. The USA women’s teams besides Day/Ross in Long Beach are 2012 Olympic silver medalists April Ross/Jennifer Kessy, Lauren Fendrick/Brittany Hochevar, Annett Davis/Whitney Pavlik and Jennifer Fopma/Brooke Sweat. Except for Ross/Kessy, the other seven USA teams are new partnerships in 2013.

A total of 78 teams from 24 countries (41 men’s teams from 17 countries and 37 women’s teams from 19 countries) selected by their national federations officially started the tournament. The event this year in Southern California is the 10th FIVB event ever held in the United States, fifth in Southern California and first since the Tour visited a USA Olympic Training Center in Carson, Calif. in 2003. In addition to two FIVB World Tour stops in Hermosa Beach, Calif. (1995, 1996), and Carson in 2003, the other SoCal FIVB event was the inaugural FIVB Beach Volleyball World Championships in 1997 held on the UCLA campus in Westwood.

Even though it has been 10 years since a World Tour event has been held in the USA, two of the previous medal winners in USA tournaments are still active, both from Brazil. On the men’s side Brazil’s Emanuel Rego and Ricardo Santos are still playing and among the top players in the world.

Emanuel has won four medals with a silver medal in 1995 and a bronze in 1996 playing with Ze Marco de Melo along with two gold medals, one in 2000 with Jose Loiola and again in 2003 with Ricardo. Ricardo also earned a silver medal in 2000 playing with Ze Marco.

The 2013 FIVB Beach Volleyball World Tour is comprised of 10 Grand Slam events and the 2013 FIVB Beach Volleyball World Championships. Not part of the World Tour but still counting towards the FIVB World Rankings, the FIVB yearly calendar also includes seven Open events, five double-gender and two women-only. There is a double-gender FIVB Open event being playing this week as well in Anapa, Russia.

The gold medal teams in each gender in the FIVB Long Beach Grand Slam will each split $33,000, the silver $22,000, the bronze $16,500 and fourth place $12,900. The women’s medal matches will be held on Friday and the men’s medal matches on Saturday. The FIVB Long Beach Grand Slam is the 291st FIVB international men’s event since the FIVB began play in 1987 and the 253rd FIVB women’s tournament since women started international competition in 1992.

After another week off next week, the 10-Grand Slam 2013 FIVB World Tour will continue in two weeks in Germany at the $440,000 FIVB Berlin Grand Slam. The season finale of the tour will be in Brazil in mid-October at the $440,000 FIVB Sao Paulo Grand Slam.

Long Beach is a city situated in Los Angeles County in Southern California, on the Pacific coast of the United States. The city is the 36th-largest city in the USA and the seventh-largest in California with its population of nearly 475,000. In addition, Long Beach is the second largest city within Greater Los Angeles Area, after Los Angeles, and a principal city of the Los Angeles-Long Beach-Santa Ana metropolitan area.



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