Continental Cup ready to fulfil more Olympic dreams
Lausanne, Switzerland, May 8, 2014 – The 2014-16 Beach Volleyball Continental Cup is all set to help more teams realise their Olympic dreams and build on the success of the inaugural cycle for the London 2012 Olympic Games.
So far 198 national federations have announced that they will take part in more than 130 events across the five continental confederations starting on June 1, 2014, with the winners of each continental competition set to earn their national federation a place at the Rio de Janeiro 2016 Olympic Games.
The number of competing federations is an increase on the 143 that took part in qualifying for London 2012.
One team per gender from each confederation will qualify for Rio de Janeiro 2016, before the second and third ranked national federations from each of the Continental Cup finals play the FIVB World Cup finals, where they have one more shot at Olympic qualification.
In London 2012 qualifying, Sydney 2000 champion Natalie Cook made history by becoming the first player to reach five Olympic Games when she and Tamsin Hinchley won the Asian competition.
The first edition of the Beach Volleyball Continental Cup was launched in 2010, building up to the London 2012 Olympic Games. It provided a new opportunity for countries to qualify for the Olympic Games, in addition to the 16 vacancies offered on the FIVB World Tour.
Speaking about the competition, FIVB President Dr. Ary S. Graça F° said: “The Continental Cup was created to give opportunities to all national federations of all the continents, regardless of size or financial ability, so that they can participate with their best athletes. The success of the Continental Cup is inevitable and consequently the beginning of the climbing toward the enhancement of beach volleyball, which with its numerous competitions, will bring together more participants, thus contributing to global diffusion of volleyball worldwide."