LAUSANNE, Switzerland, 2 May 2002 - The FIVB has announced the Qualification system for Beach Volleyball for the 2004 Olympic Games in Athens.
Beach Volleyball will be open to a total of 24 men's and 24 women's teams of two players (maximum two teams per country), who will be able to accumulate ranking points during nominated Olympic Qualification Tournaments held worldwide from January 1 2003, to 11 July 2004. Teams may use their best eight results from the qualification tournaments to go towards their ranking.
Greece, the host country will have one automatic team placement in both men's and women's division, and may have one more team in each gender, should they win a place through the qualification process.
Provision has been made for Wild Card entries (included in the 24 team-quota) for teams from continents unable to gain entry through the normal qualification tournaments. This will allow for the highest-ranking eligible pair from that continent to compete. Wild cards have been introduced to respect the universality principle of the Olympic Games.
Applications for entry must be made through National Federations after receiving approval from their National Olympic Committees, who must verify that teams have fulfilled the required conditions.
Beach Volleyball has been a full Olympic Sport since its introduction in 1996 at the Atlanta Games.