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Russia ready to host seventh FIVB Moscow Grand Slam

Celebrating last year were the men and women podium finishers and this year promises even more exciting times at Vodny Stadium for the $800,000 FIVB Moscow Grand Slam as organizers are ready for the June 11-15 event.
Lausanne, Switzerland, May 26, 2014 – Less than three weeks remain before the start of one of the biggest competitions in international beach volleyball, which will be held in Moscow for the seventh straight year - the Moscow stage for the US$800,000 FIVB Beach Volleyball World Tour Moscow Grand Slam will be waiting for the fans from June 1-15 at its new home at Vodny Stadium on the grounds of the Vodny Royal Yacht Club.

A major sports complex has been renovated recently in the northern part of the Russian capital. In addition to the most modern courts for beach volleyball, beach soccer, beach rugby and handball, this venue also has a 50 - meter pool "Dynamo", fields for soccer and tennis courts. Also, after sports everyone can get some sunbathing on the beach. There is also an opportunity to ride on a yacht available for all the guests. However, in for this event personal transportation is recommended.

For the first time the FIVB Moscow Grand Slam was held at Vodny Stadium in August 2013. That’s when the tournament changed it’s permanent location after five years in the heart of Moscow - on Poklonnaya Gora in Victory Park . Despite the organizers' fears and not the best weather, the FIVB Moscow Grand Slam in 2013 received positive feedback from all corners. The event received good remarks from both the international volleyball federation and from the athletes and fans. Of course, a certain roughness and observations were still presenting, but with the new venues it is a usual thing.

The main thing was that despite the torrential rain during the the final days, the stands of Vodny stadium were filled almost to capacity. The athletes also noted that it's much more pleasure to compete on the site surrounded by greenery, water and lawn than at the old temporary stadium, erected on the pavement. Even though it was located in the heart of the megalopolis.

Preparations for this year’s edition of the FIVB Moscow Grand Slam began several months ago. The courts at the beach sports complex "Dinamo" were opened throughout the whole season from May to October, regardless to the number of major events held there. In 2014, the season was opened by the Moscow beach games, after which the organizers began the active phase of preparations for a major FIVB event.

"At this point we can safely say that we are almost ready for the seventh edition of FIVB Moscow Grand Slam,” said tournament director Ilya Volodarsky who is also a member of the FIVB Beach Volleyball Commissions. “The courts and equipment were opened a month ago, we have brought the additional amount of sand needed, updated inventory, all equipment has been checked. Now we are finishing with the grandstands of the central stadium court. This year the tournament's dates fall on the four day holiday in Russia, so we are looking forward to a good weather and full stands."

As for the Russian national team athletes, they are playing now on European stages of FIVB World Tour, but the thoughts about the upcoming FIVB Moscow Grand Slam are visiting them more and more

"We are "rolling" in the season” said women’s team leader Evgenia Ukolova. “We have already played several stages of the FIVB World Tour, but the results are not particularly encouraging. I'd like to win something. To take any medal at a Moscow event is my dream. In fact, I dreamed about the medals at two tournaments - in Klagenfurt and in Moscow. Last year one of these two dreams came true, we won with Katya Khomyakova in Klagenfurt. The next stop is Moscow. Last year we played so poorly at home, so in 2014, together with Masha Prokopieva, we will make every effort to please the fans and family and win a medal."

First matches of Moscow GS will be played at Vodny Stadium on June 11. On June 2 will take place a second press conference dedicated to the FIVB Moscow Grand Slam - 2014. The event will take place at the multimedia press-centre "Russia Today".


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