Bansley and Maloney hope to maintain momentum at Shanghai stop

SHANGHAI (May 1, 2012)  – After 17th and seventh place finishes at the opening two stops on the FIBV World Tour circuit in beach volleyball, Heather Bansley and Liz Maloney of Toronto look to maintain their momentum for the third stop which starts for them here on Wednesday in the main draw.

The Canadian pair are trying to chase down a top-16 ranking on the Tour by the end of June.  That would guarantee them a spot at the 2012 Olympic Games.  Heading into the Shanghai stop they are 20th in the FIVB Olympic rankings.

‘’We are still striving to break into the top-five,’’ said Maloney.   We want to keep improving as we get further along into the season, especially as we get into the Grand Slam events.’’

Shanghai is the first Grand Slam event on the Tour.  Cash prizes at Grand Slams are nearly doubled.

’It's our goal to qualify for the Olympics firstly through the FIVB World Tour, and top 10 finishes
are what we need,’’ said Bansley.

Qualification for the women for the Shanghai event was held Tuesday.  Marie-Andrée Lessard of Ville LaSalle, Que., (in photo) and Annie Martin of Sherbrooke, Que., came within a victory of advancing to the main draw losing their second match.

‘’We are pleased with how we played,’’ said Lessard.  ‘’We are improving through each tournament.  We are finding our rhythm again and we are getting closer to our top level of play.’’

Julie Rodrigue of Quebec City and Kacie MacTavish of Sharon, Ont., lost their opening match.

The men’s qualifying gets underway Wednesday.  Canadian entries are Josh Binstock of Toronto and Martin Reader of Comox, B.C., ninth at last week’s stop in Poland ; Ben Saxton of Calgary and Christian Redmann of Toronto; Maverick Hatch of Comox and Sam Schachter of Toronto and Richard Van Huizen of Toronto and Garrett May of London, Ont.

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