Players agreed to drop their threat of a boycott last night at the Beach Volleyball World Championships in Berlin. Now they want a union.
After accepting the International Volleyball Federation's reasons for admitting the U.S. teams to the championships despite their late registration, the women are giving the FIVB just 24 hours to agree to a players' union.
"They are no longer complaining about the U.S. teams. Now the focus is on something else," said FIVB Beach Volleyball Director Angelo Squeo. "Now they are trying to use their leverage at the world championships to put on the pressure."
Squeo said he did not think the FIVB would cave to the demand or that the women would actually boycott.
Players were angered by the late addition of American teams. They also questioned why U.S. teams were allowed to play when they had not signed an agreement with the International Volleyball Federation to compete in any World Tour events this season. The worlds are considered part of that Tour.
The top U.S. players -- such as defending Olympic and world champions Misty May and Kerri Walsh, who swept through the first two rounds yesterday -- were instead playing in U.S.-based AVP events this season.
But Squeo told the women it was a "miscommunication" and that the U.S. teams had signed an agreement Monday. Squeo said he spent yesterday showing the U.S. contract to several teams and they seemed pacified.
-- From News Services