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Old 05-24-2008, 05:57 AM   #6 (permalink)
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Default American qualifiers net SWATCH FIVB World Tour “final four” spot

For the first-time in 38 SWATCH FIVB World Tour stops, a team other than a Brazilian pair has advanced through the Qualification Tournament to an event semi-final as Matt Fuerbringer and Casey Jennings of the United States accomplished the feat here Friday with a pair of wins at the US$175,000 VIP Open.

Fuerbringer and Jennings scored wins over tandems from the United States and Germany to join Reindeer Nummerdor and Richard Schuil of the Netherlands as “final four” participants at the fourth annual VIP Open where the semi-final matches will be played Saturday afternoon after two rounds of elimination matches. The SWATCH FIVB World Tour concludes Sunday when the final two teams compete for the $28,000 first-place prize.

Not since Italians Riccardo Lione and Matteo Varnier qualified for a FIVB Main Draw at the end of the 2005 season in a Mexican SWATCH stop in Acapulco has a non-Brazilian team earned a “final four” berth on the international circuit. Since the October 2005 event, teams from the South American country have accomplished the feat five times with three of those pairs also winning Country Quota matches and one team (Harley Marques/Pedro Salgado) winning a gold medal.

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