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European sands welcome third round of Continental Cup

Teams from as many as 32 countries are set to compete in the 3rd Round of the 2014-2016 CEV Beach Volleyball Continental Cup
Luxembourg, April 29, 2015 - The 3rd Round of the 2014-2016 CEV Beach Volleyball Continental Cup this week features events in Baden (Austria), Thessaloniki (Greece), Vilnius (Lithuania) and Fethiye (Turkey). The winners will play the finals scheduled next year and get a step closer to the fulfilment of their Olympic dreams.

The second and third-placed teams at the 3rd Round events will get another chance to stay in contention for a spot at the beach volleyball competition at the 2016 Rio Olympic Games via the 4th Round of the Continental Cup competition, which is set to follow later this year.

The Continental Cup 3rd Round tournaments coincide with the opening of a busy campaign in Europe, which is set to reach its climax with the inaugural European Games in Baku (June 16-21) and the CEV Beach Volleyball European Championship – Final, which will take place in Klagenfurt, Austria from July 28 through to August 2.

With the 3rd Round of the Continental Cup, the top eight nations from the CEV Country Ranking finally enter the competition, which contributes an additional flavour to the events taking place over the coming weekend and next week too. A significant share of Europe’s beach volleyball elite will take to the sands and carry their countries' hopes of a spot in the Olympic tournament next year.

The Austrian city of Baden is well known to the beach volleyball family for hosting a number of international events in recent years. Matches will begin on Thursday in Pool B, which includes teams from Russia, Ukraine, Scotland, as well as pairs from Norway and Bulgaria in the men’s and women’s competition respectively. Austria play on Saturday and Sunday in Pool A, when they take on duos from Portugal and Azerbaijan, with the Czech Republic and Sweden entering the competition with their male and female teams.

Lithuania’s capital Vilnius will again welcome an international competition after playing host to one of the 1st Round events last year. This time around, the task will be more difficult for the home teams, with their toughest competitors in Pool F likely to be the ladies from the Czech Republic and the men’s teams from Poland.

After hosting last year’s U22 European Championship, Turkey’s seaside resort of Fethiye will also welcome the Continental Cup. The Latvian men and Swiss ladies headline Pool H, with Poland and Belgium completing the field in the women’s tournament. Turkey will take on opposition from England and Croatia.

Germany is Europe’s leading beach volleyball power and their status was further cemented last week at the FIVB Beach Volleyball World Tour Fuzhou Open, where they won gold and silver with their men and women respectively. They will debut in the second edition of the Continental Cup later this weekend in Thessaloniki, and are joined there by hosts Greece, Belarus, England (women only) and Romania (men only).


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