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Ground breaking meeting between FIVB and athletes discusses beach volleyball future

The meeting provided "an excellent opportunity for discussion between the FIVB and players, enabling open dialogue on the recommendations and concerns of the players,” FIVB Beach Volleyball Commission President Vicente Araujo said

Lausanne, Switzerland, March 7, 2013 – The International Volleyball Federation (FIVB) welcomed a beach volleyball player delegation to its headquarters in Lausanne, Switzerland on Thursday to review and discuss the FIVB’s modernised global beach volleyball strategy put in place for the Olympic period 2013-2016.
Following the direction of FIVB President Dr. Ary S. Graça F° for increased transparency, democracy and fairness towards players, FIVB Beach Volleyball Commission President Vicente Araujo and FIVB Beach Volleyball Department Director Angelo Squeo explained to the delegation, which included nine players - Hannes Brinkborg (SWE), Lauren Fendrick (USA), Daniel Hupfer (AUT), Janne Kongshavn (NOR), Todd Rogers (USA), Pedro Solberg (BRA), Maria Tsiartsiani (GRE), Marloes Wesselink (NED) and Nadine Zumkehr (SUI) - the technical aspects of the new FIVB beach volleyball philosophy and its goals, namely:

To grow the sport worldwide;
To increase the number of participating national federations;
To increase the role of the confederations;
To increase the importance of all levels of events;
To increase the number of promoters;
To create more opportunities for players to play;
To allow new teams and new countries to enter the World Tour easily;
To ensure high quality events without over burdening promoters.

“The FIVB has developed a long-term strategy which is focused on beach volleyball sustainability and extensive growth and of course the athletes are crucial to the future of our sport so we are very grateful for their participation in today’s meeting and their willingness to improve beach volleyball in all parts of the world,” Mr Araujo said. “The meeting provided an excellent opportunity for discussion between the FIVB and players, enabling open dialogue on the recommendations and concerns of the players and input from both sides on how we can maximise beach volleyball's potential across all areas for the betterment of the sport and its participants.”

"We are very appreciative to the FIVB for making this meeting happen and in particular Mr Araujo and Mr Squeo for listening to and considering the players thoughts and comments,"
2007 world and 2008 Olympic champion Rogers said. "I am also very appreciative to all the players who gave input and in particular the players that were able to make this meeting. Without question positive progress was made and I believe we are moving in the right direction. We all want what is best for beach volleyball and these kinds of discussions are very important for the different constituency groups to be able to discuss how that can be accomplished moving forward."

Thursday’s meeting followed an intensive four month evaluation process of the FIVB’s new beach volleyball philosophy starting with the Beach Volleyball Commission in November and two rounds of feedback between the FIVB and national federations and members.

It also continued the strong tradition of involving athletes in the consultation process with player representation on the FIVB Commissions going back 20 years.

One of the key parts of the new philosophy in 2013 has seen the launch of the FIVB Beach Volleyball World Tour featuring the FIVB Beach Volleyball World Championships in Stare Jablonki, Poland and 11 Grand Slams, the most ever in FIVB history, starting in April and finishing in November.

A total of eight FIVB Beach Volleyball Open competitions are also scheduled – but are not part of the World Tour to provide the chance to up and coming players to play with the format of all tournaments; FIVB World Championships, FIVB World Tour Grand Slam or an FIVB Open all the same, featuring pool play followed by single elimination knockout rounds.

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