PRESS RELEASE 15.07.2008

Japan is granted the wild card for the 2008 World League Final

Japan, here celebrating against Egypt in the World League earlier in July in Komaki, will attend the Final Round of the competition as the FIVB wild card

Lausanne, July 15, 2008 – The FIVB has awarded the 2008 World League Final Round wild card to Japan, who will compete in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, with five other teams from July 23 to 27.

FIVB President Dr. Rubén Acosta said that the choice of Japan is the best decision for this year’s competition: “Every year it is very difficult to choose the wild card, with lots of teams deserving this place,” said Dr. Acosta.

“This year, with little time before the Final Round starts and the Olympic Games upcoming with many things to organise, we needed to make a quick decision. Japan guarantees very good television coverage and they officially applied for the wild card in writing, telling the FIVB that they were ready to face the challenge.”

Japan join Brazil, who automatically qualified as host, along with Intercontinental Round Pool B winner Russia and Pool C winner USA in the round-robin tournament which will feature 10 matches over five days.

France and Serbia are currently competing for the qualifying position behind Brazil in Pool A. Brazil are chasing their sixth-straight World League title and eighth in total.

Poland are in the qualifying position at the top of Pool D. Italy and Bulgaria are now second in their respective Pools, unable to qualify for the Rio competition.

The World League, FIVB’s flagship annual Men’s competition featuring the world’s best players, started in 1990, and in this year’s 19th edition National Teams are competing for more than USD 20 million in Prize Money.

For all the latest news on the 2008 FIVB World League go to the official FIVB website at http://www.fivb.org/EN/Volleyball/Competitions/WorldLeague/2008/