FIVB Beach Volleyball World Tour

Fortaleza Open 2016 | 26 avril - 1 mai 2016


Press release

Two German pairs seek FIVB World Tour Olympic berth

Kay Matysik (left) of Germany competes at the FIVB World Tour net against Aleksandrs Samoilovs of Latvia in a pool play match in Rio March 10. Matysik and Jonathan Erdmann are chasing a possible Copacabana berth for the Rio 2016 Olympic Games.

Lausanne, Switzerland, April 25, 2016 - With 50 days and seven events left in the qualifying process for the 15 available men’s berths via the FIVB World Tour for the Rio 2016 Olympics Games, two German pairs are battling teams from Canada, Chile, France, Mexico, Turkey and Venezuela for the final two spots for the Copacabana competition.

With 24 of the 30 FIVB World Tour qualifying events completed, Markus Böckermann and Lars Flüggen of Germany will be missing the next two international stops in Brazil (Fortaleza) before returning to action in Turkey (Antalya) for the Konyaalti Beachpark event where the Germans won three of four matches last October before finishing ninth.


With Flüggen sidelined with a knee injury suffered earlier this month at the Qatar Open, the German pair and their 4,400 Rio qualifying points since the start of the process in April 2015 will be watching as compatriots and London 2012 Olympic participants Jonathan Erdmann and Kay Matysik attempt to make up ground.

Matysik, who has also been battling injuries, and Erdmann will satisfy their Rio Olympic qualifying requirement after competing in both Fortaleza and Sochi tournaments on by competing in at least 12 FIVB World Tour events.  Despite not teaming together in the last four international events in Vitoria (Brazil), Doha (Qatar) and China (Xiamen and Fuzhou), Erdmann and Matysik have currently compiled 3,540 points for 10 participations.


Mexico’s Lombardo Ontiveros and Juan Virgen have strengthen their hold on the 15th and final spot on the Olympic provisional list by adding 220 points to their total the last two weeks with “elite eight” finishes at Chinese stops in Xiamen and Fuzhou.  With 4,270 points for their 12 best finishes on the FIVB World Tour since the start of the process, Ontiveros and Virgen gained 160 points by winning the bronze medal in Xiamen and placing fifth in Fuzhou last week.

The gold medal winners at the 2015 PanAmerican Games, Ontiveros and Virgen need to place fifth or higher in their remaining four FIVB World Tour “open” events in Fortaleza, Sochi, Antalya and Cincinnati to improve their point totals.  Once Flüggen returns to play in Antalya, he and Böckermann also have to reach the quarterfinals in the Turkey and United States FIVB World Tour stops to increase their qualifying totals.


With 15 of the 24 men’s Rio 2016 Olympic Beach Volleyball berths available from the FIVB World Tour, other teams competing with the Germans and Mexicans for the remaining two spots are Josh Binstock/Sam Schachter of Canada (3,860 points, 410 points behind Ontiveros/Virgen, 540 points behind Böckermann/Flüggen), Youssef Krou/Edouard Rowlandson of France (3,850, 420, 550), the Grimalt cousins (Esteban/Marco) of Chile (3,770, 500, 630), Murat Giginoglu/Volkan Gogtepe of Turkey (3,460, 810, 940) and Jackson Henriquez/Jesus Villafane of Venezuela (3,310, 960, 1,090).

All five teams will have to post “final four” finishes in the remaining “open” and/or grand slam events to catch Böckermann/Flüggen and Ontiveros/Virgen.  Following the “open” events, the FIVB World Tour qualifying process ends with grand slam stops in Russia (Moscow, May 24-29) and Germany (Hamburg, June 7-12).  For the European teams from France, Germany and Turkey, points from the continental championships June 1-5 in Switzerland at Biel/Bienne can also count if among a team’s best 12 finishes.


Americans Phil Dalhausser and Nick Lucena, winners of four “open” gold medals during the qualifying process along with the NORCECA continental championship, still need to participant in two more FIVB World Tour events to satisfy the requirement of playing in 12 events together.  With 5,080 points for 10 events to rank fifth among non-Brazilian pairs on the FIVB World Tour qualifying list for Rio, Dalhausser and Lucena are scheduled to compete in Antalya, Cincinnati and Moscow.

Winners of the Fuzhou Open last week by defeating Italy’s Daniele Lupo and Paolo Nicolai 2-0 (21-18, 21-15) in the 33-minute gold medal match Saturday, Dalhausser and Lucena defeated Ontiveros and Virgen 2-0 (21-17, 21-12 in the quarterfinals Friday before downing Aleksandrs Samoilovs and Janis Smedins of Latvia 2-0 (21-19, 21-13) in the semifinals Saturday morning.

Prior to topping the podium in Fuzhou for his 33rd FIVB World Tour gold medal, Dalhausser had missed the previous three FIVB World Tour events due to an injury.  Jake Gibb and Casey Patterson (5,120 points) are the top-ranked American pair on the provisional list while Tri Bourne and John Hyden (4,570) are “on the outside looking in”. 


To qualify for the Olympics, a team must compete together in at least 12 FIVB World Tour events and/or recognized Continental championships from January 2015 through June 13, 2016.  A team’s best 12 finishes will be used to determine a tandem’s ranking.

Five pairs for each gender’s Olympic competition will qualify via Continental Cup action where each FIVB confederation is guaranteed a berth in the Rio 2016 Summer Games.  The last qualifying event will be July 6-10 when Russia hosts the FIVB World Continental Cup Olympic Qualification Tournament in Sochi.  The top two tandems from each gender from the Continental Cup qualifier will earn the last two pairs in the 24-team Olympic competitions.


Brazil has already qualified two teams in each gender’s competition for the Rio 2016 Olympic Games.  Two pairs from the South American country captured the gold medals at the 2015 FIVB World Championships last July in the Netherlands (Alison Cerutti/Bruno Oscar Schmidt and Agatha Bednarczuk/Barbara Seixas) to secure Copacabana compartments.  Being the host of the Rio Summer Games, Brazil was also guaranteed two teams in the 24-team men’s and women’s fields (Evandro Goncalves/Pedro Solberg and Talita Antunes/Larissa Franca).

With all that said, Brazilian pairs cannot qualify another team for the Rio 2016 Olympic Games through the FIVB World Tour.  Therefore, the ranking list excludes Brazilians in the ranking order as Talita/Larissa (6,940) and Agatha/Barbara (6,870) rank 1-2 on the women’s provisional list.  Alison/Bruno (7,050 points) and Evandro Pedro (6,130) are the top two teams on the men’s provisional points list for Rio.


The last six FIVB World Tour stops during the qualifying process for the Rio 2016 Olympic Games are double gender tournaments highlighted by $800,000 FIVB World Tour Grand Slam stops in Moscow and Hamburg.

• April 26-May 1 - Fortaleza (Brazil) Open
• May 3-8 - Sochi (Russia) Open
• May 10-15 - Antalya (Turkey) Open
• May 17-22 - Cincinnati (United States) Open
• May 24-29 - Moscow (Russia) Grand Slam
• June 7-12 - Hamburg (Germany) Grand Slam

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