Friday, July 8, 2016
Friday, July 8, 2016

Haiti hosts CAZOVA/FIVB World Championship qualifiers

 

It will also mark the start of the qualification in any Zone or Confederation, under the entire FIVB umbrella.

However, while it may serve as greater things to come for some, it will also spell the early end to dreams for others with big aspirations in getting to the World Championship to be held jointly by Italy, and  Bulgaria. 

Ranked seventh by CAZOVA, Haiti will play host to a four-team round-robin series involving Curacao, ranked fifth and its expected main rival as well as US Virgin Islands and Cayman Islands, which are rated at 11th and 12th.

The matches will be contested on Saturday July 9 from 5pm at the Gymnasium Vincent “Tet Kale”, Port-au-Prince, Haiti with a double-header, followed by two matches on the morning of Sunday July 10 from 9am, followed by two more matches on Sunday afternoon from 5pm to end proceedings.   

Four years ago, when all four countries also participated in the qualifiers to the 2014 FIVB under a different format which incorporated all zones from round one, Haiti feared the best.

Back then, the Haitians reached as far as the Third Round of qualifiers while Cayman Islands and US Virgin Islands did not get past the first hurdle, and Curacao was ousted in Round Two.

Speaking ahead of the round-robin series, Margarette Graham, President of the Haitian Volleyball Federation (DNF) said the sporting community and general public was extremely excited about the event.

“This is the very first time that Haiti will be hosting a CAZOVA or NORCECA event at any level and for this the players, general public and the federation are very thankful.

 “We have done quite a bit of work in marketing the event with a number of interviews on radio, television and in the newspapers to put the spotlight on the event and the response has been overwhelming.”

However, Graham in looking ahead also pointed out that she thinks for the sport to grow to any great level in Haiti, a lot more funding is needed.

“For us funding has been a major issue over the years. Haiti probably the poorest country in the Caribbean, and the most expensive place to live as well in the region.

She added, “We rely 90 % on imported goods in our country which makes for a very feeble economy and high pricing of goods, and we really need more financial support which will be greatly appreciated.

“Our aim after this tournament is to prepare our Under-23 Caribbean Championship, but at the moment we don’t think it will be possible because we don’t even have money to apply for US Visas, let alone purchase plane tickets.”

Mushtaque Mohammed, President of the Caribbean Zonal Volleyball Association said he was in full support of the new format for qualification to the World Championship, where all the teams had an opportunity to participate.

“The establishment of the CAZOVA Championship being a part of the qualification process also makes for a more interesting group stage of matches as well.”

Apart from this group of qualifiers in Haiti, the two other four-country First Round Qualification groups features  Bahamas-3, Aruba-8, Martinique-9 and Bonaire-4 (Pool A) and Suriname-4, Jamaica-6, Guadeloupe-10 and Turks & Caicos-13 (Pool-B) and will both be contested in late October.

At the conclusion of each of the first round group qualifiers, the top two teams will both advance to the next round where they will joint top ranked nation and reigning CAZOVA champions Trinidad and Tobago, and perennial champions and second ranked Barbados in the eight-team finals.

The eight-team final will the top two teams overall will again qualify to the next round of FIVB World Championship qualification while crowning the eventual champions of CAZOVA.

At the NORCECA Continental, the CAZOVA duo will join the USA, Cuba, Canada, Mexico, Costa Rica and Puerto Rico along with two from Central America and two from the Eastern Caribbean Zonal Volleyball Association (ECVA) in the top-12 qualification process to determine the eventual qualifiers to the World Championships.

     

2016 Men’s First Round Qualifying Groups:

July 8-11: Haiti (host)

C: Curacao-5, Haiti-7, US Virgin Islands-11, Cayman Islands-12

 

Tournament schedule:

Session One:

Saturday July 9:

Curacao vs US Vrgin Islands, 5pm

Haiti vs Cayman Islands, 7pm

 

Session Two:

Sunday July 10:

Curacao vs Cayman Islands, 9am

Haiti vs US Virgin Islands, 11am

 

Session Three:

USVI vs Cayman Islands, 5pm

Haiti vs Curacao, 7pm

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Remaining First Round Men’s Qulifiers:

October 21-24: Martinique (host)

A: Bahamas-3, Aruba-8, Martinique-9, Bonaire-14

 

October 28-31: Suriname (host)

B: Suriname-4, Jamaica-6, Guadeloupe-10, Turks & Caicos-13

 

NB: Top two teams from each First Round series advances to the Second Round.

 

2017 Men’s Second Round (CAZOVA Championship)

Host: Trinidad and Tobago

Pool D: T&T-1, C2, B1, A2

Pool E: Barbados-2, C1, B2, A1

 

NB: Two teams to reach the final will qualifying to the NORCECA Championship Qualifiers.

 

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