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Seven Teams begin the battle in Men’s Volleyball Pan American Cup 

MEXICALI, México, June 5, 2006.- Seven teams begin today the battle in the inaugural Men’s Volleyball Pan American Cup, a qualifier for the America’s Cup to be held in Venezuela next September.

USA, Canada and Cuba, teams in preparation for the next World Championships in Japan, will be facing the competition of sides from Dominican Republic, Mexico, Panama and Trinidad & Tobago.

“This is the start of great things for the men in Norceca,” said Mr. Cristobal Marte during his words of welcome at the general technical meeting. “As it has been the case with the women’s Pan American Cup, we hope to achieve the same success with this event.”

Canada will meet Dominican Republic and Mexico will face Trinidad & Tobago in Mexicali in Pool A, while USA will play against Panama in Tijuana. Cuba will have a rest day because Guatemala withdrew at last minute, because of visa problems, leaving pool B only with three teams.

The opening ceremony will be at 19:00 (local time) in both sites, informed Mr. Saul Castro Verdugo, president of the Organizing Committee who is also General Director of the Sports Institute of Baja California.

“I hope all teams enjoy the warmth of the hospitality offered by the whole family of Baja California and all of you can have a pleasant stay here,” said Mr. Castro Verdugo, who wished the best of luck to all participants.

USA and Canada are here with their best players and are considered the favourites to take the title. Cuba is represented by a young squad and Dominican Republic and Mexico have also strong teams.

The top three teams of this tournament will qualify for the America’s Cup joining the teams from Argentina, Brazil and Venezuela.

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