The draw of the groups of the Intercontinental tournaments of the World Cup Division 2 (Berlin, May 2 – 7) was made in Rotterdam before the last day of the Women’s World Cup Division 1 tournament.
Sixteen teams will participate (eight men’s and eight women’s squads).
Two male and two female teams will qualify for the World Cup Finals in the USA. The women’s Final will take place in Long Beach (June 23 – 25), and the men’s in Los Angeles (June 30 – July 2).
The participants will play in two groups at each tournament.
The competition formula is the same both for the men’s and the women’s tournaments in Berlin. The winners and the second-placed teams from each group will advance to the crossover round (A1 – B2 and B1 – A2). The winners of the crossover round games will advance to the Final Eights.
All four groups are quite balanced.
Division 2, Men
Group A: China, Germany, Malta, South Africa.
Group B: Romania, New Zealand, Kazakhstan, Iran
Germany qualified as the host. China (guided by Germany’s former coach Petar Porobic) and Iran will arrive in Berlin as the best teams in the Asian Championships, Romania, as the 2nd-placed in the European qualifiers (behind Germany). New Zealand represents Oceania, and South Africa comes as the African team.
Two American teams that qualified throughout the Pan American Championships (Canada and Brazil) withdrew. The Pan American Championships was a qualifying tournament for the World Championships in Fukuoka, and booking tickets for Fukuoka was Canada’s and Brazil’s primary goal.
Malta as the 3rd-placed team in European qualifications and Kazakhstan, the bronze-medalist at the Asian Championships, were invited to fill vacancies.
The men will play their matches between May 5 and 7.
Division 2, Women
Group A: South Africa, Uzbekistan, Ukraine, Israel.
Group B: New Zealand, Kazakhstan, Germany, Great Britain
Same as for the men’s tournament, there are no American teams., but only one qualified team will arrive in Berlin. It’s Kazakhstan, the winner of the Asian Championships. Thailand, which finished 2nd, withdrew and it was replaced by bronze-medalist Uzbekistan. South Africa and New Zealand represent their respective continents. There were no European qualifications – besides Germany, three teams from the “Old Continent” will play – Israel, Ukraine and Great Britain.
The female tournament is on the schedule between May 2 and 4.