European pairs from Germany, Italy and the Netherlands captured gold, silver and bronze medals, respectively, at the Rio 2016 Olympic Games
Haiyang, China, September 20, 2019 - With 14 pairs from Europe reaching the final rounds of this week's FIVB Tokyo Beach Volleyball Olympic Qualification Tournament, the continent is now guaranteed two more spots in the 2020 Summer Games.
With a total of two men's pairs earning spots for their countries on Saturday in the Tokyo Olympic Games and two women's tandems securing spots for their nations on Sunday, the FIVB Tokyo Beach Volleyball Olympic Qualification Tournament is the second of five pathways to be completed during the qualification process for the Summer Games.
Fan Wang/Xinyi Xia of China and Andre Loyola/George Wanderley of Brazil are the only non-European pairs remaining in the competition for the Tokyo berths as the schedule here on Friday featured pool play for both genders on Golden Beach.
There are two men’s and two women’s pairs with past Olympic experience still competing in the FIVB Tokyo Beach Volleyball Olympic Qualification Tournament. Daniele Lupo/Paolo Nicolai of Italy and Alexander Brouwer/Robert Meeuwsen of the Netherlands are Rio 2016 Olympic podium placers still competing this weekend. The Italians captured the silver medal in Rio and the Dutch claimed the third podium spot on Copacabana in August 2016.
The first pathway to Tokyo was completed on July 6 and 7 in Germany at the FIVB World Championships where Russians Viacheslav Krasilnikov/Oleg Stoyanovskiy captured the men's gold medal after Canadians Melissa Humana-Paredes/Sarah Pavan claimed the women's title the previous evening in Hamburg.
Russians Viacheslav Krasilnikov (left) and Oleg Stoyanovskiy
The third pathway to the 2020 Summer Games is via the FIVB World Ranking where 15 teams per gender will qualify for Tokyo. The fourth route is via the Continental Cup for the five FIVB confederations (African, Asian, European, NORCECA and South American) with the last pathway being men's and women's spots for host Japan.
The European dominance on the international beach volleyball scene was well-documented during the 2018-2019 FIVB World Tour season where 49 men's and 47 women's events were staged. With 42 nations placing on FIVB podiums this past season, European pairs from 25 countries claimed 54 percent of the medals and 58 percent of the titles.