FIVB Volleyball World Cup

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FIVB Volleyball World Cup
VolleyballWorldCupLogo.png
Logo FIVB Volleyball World Cup
Sport Volleyball
Founded 1965
Inaugural season M: 1965
W: 1973
No. of teams 12
Countries FIVB member nations
Continent International (FIVB)
Most recent champion(s) M:  Russia (6th title)
W:  Italy (2nd title)
Most titles M:  Russia (6 titles)
W:  Cuba (4 titles)

The FIVB Volleyball World Cup is a men's and women's volleyball competition. Created in 1965 (men) and 1973 (women), it is an international qualification event for the Olympic Games. It is not to be confused with the World Championship or the World League/World Grand Prix.

History[edit]

Origins[edit]

The World Cup was created in 1965 with the purpose of partially filling the gap between the two most important volleyball tournaments, the Olympic Games and the World Championship, which take place in alternating 4-year cycles. The establishment of a third international competition would leave only one in every four years with no major events.

The World Cup was to be held in the year following the Olympic Games. The first two tournaments were for men's volleyball only; in 1973, a women's tournament was also introduced. Originally, each tournament had a different host, but in 1977 the competition was transferred to Japan on a permanent basis.

In the 1990s, the installment of annual international events such as the World League and the Grand Prix made the original motivations for the creation of the World Cup obsolete. Instead of letting a consolidated event disappear for lack of interest, the FIVB decided to change its format in 1991: it would be held in the year preceding, and not following, the Olympic Games; and it would be considered a first international Olympic qualification tournament, granting the winner a direct berth in the games.

This move saved the competition. The possibility of securing an early berth for the Olympic Games, thus avoiding extraneous and in some cases tight continental qualification procedures, became a consistent motivation for the national federations to participate in the World Cup. In 1995, the number of Olympic spots granted at the competition was increased to three, as it remains up to now (2011).

Winners (Men)[edit]

Former Soviet Union and Brazil (2007) managed to win the Men's World Cup more than once. The Soviets took the gold at the opening edition of the tournament, in 1965. Four years later, the winner was also a socialist nation, East Germany. Brazil's team won consecutively 2003 and 2007.

Scheduled for Uruguay, the men's events of the 1973 edition were cancelled. In 1977, competition was resumed in Japan, and the USSR came back for two wins in a row. In 1985, they were once again runner-ups, but lost the decisive match to USA in five sets. In 1989, Cuba surprised the world and beat a rising Italy to take the gold.

With the competition now set as a qualifying event for the Olympic Games, Soviet Union, led by Dmitri Fomin won the title in 1991, at the brink of dissolution. The Italians, who hadn't participated in this edition, finally conquered their gold medal in 1995.

Inheriting a large part of the former Soviet volleyball programme, Russia was the winner in 1999. In the following two editions, played in 2003 and 2007 respectively, were won by favorite Brazil.

In 2011, the world champion Russia regained there title defeating Poland.

Winners (Women)[edit]

The Women's World Cup has had not one great winner, like its counterpart for men's volleyball, but two: Cuba and China.

The first edition of the tournament was won by the Soviet Union. Japan, the runner-up of 1973, took the gold in 1977. With the help of superstar player Lang Ping, China won the following two editions, in 1981 and 1985.

Then Cuba stepped forward to begin its amazing World Cup career, winning its first title in 1989. With the tournament now as an Olympic qualifier, there followed three more consecutive victories, in 1991, 1995 and 1999.

China came back in 2003 with a remarkably offensive team to win its third title.

Finally Italy won the 2007 edition with an outstanding record of eleven wins in eleven games and only two sets left to the opponents (both lost against Serbia). Italy took a second win in a row in 2011, getting the better hand on United States and China.

Competition formula[edit]

The World Cup is the most stable from all competition formulas employed by the FIVB. The following rules apply:

  • The competition takes place in Japan.
  • Twelve teams participate in each event: ten qualified, two per invitation.
  • Japan is always pre-qualified as host nation.
  • Five continental champions are qualified plus the best four continental vice-champions according to the FIVB ranking.
  • The remaining two teams participate through wild cards granted by the FIVB.
  • Since the 1999 edition, only teams not yet qualified for the following Olympic Games can compete in the World Cup.
  • The competition is divided in exactly two phases (called "legs").
  • Teams are divided in two pools.
  • At the first leg, each team plays one match against all other teams in its pool.
  • At the second leg, each team plays one match against all the teams in the other pool.
  • Matches take place continuously through two weeks, with one-day breaks every two or three days. Each day, six matches are played.
  • Final standings are calculated by usual volleyball criteria: match points, numbers of matches won, sets ratio (the total number of sets won divided by the total number of sets lost), points ratio, direct confrontation.
  • Top three teams in overall standings, regardless of pools, qualify for the following Olympic Games.
  • The tournament implements very tight line-up restrictions: only twelve players are allowed, and no replacement is permitted, even in the case of injuries.

Results[edit]

Men[edit]

Year Host Final 3rd place match Number of teams
Champions Score Runners-up 3rd place Score 4th place
1965
Details
Poland
Poland

Soviet Union
Round-robin
Poland

Czechoslovakia
Round-robin
Japan
11
1969
Details
East Germany
East Germany

East Germany
Round-robin
Japan

Soviet Union
Round-robin
Bulgaria
11
1977
Details
Japan
Japan

Soviet Union
Round-robin
Japan

Cuba
Round-robin
Poland
12
1981
Details
Japan
Japan

Soviet Union
Round-robin
Cuba

Brazil
Round-robin
Poland
8
1985
Details
Japan
Japan

United States
Round-robin
Soviet Union

Czechoslovakia
Round-robin
Brazil
8
1989
Details
Japan
Japan

Cuba
Round-robin
Italy

Soviet Union
Round-robin
United States
8
1991
Details
Japan
Japan

Soviet Union
Round-robin
Cuba

United States
Round-robin
Japan
12
1995
Details
Japan
Japan

Italy
Round-robin
Netherlands

Brazil
Round-robin
United States
12
1999
Details
Japan
Japan

Russia
Round-robin
Cuba

Italy
Round-robin
United States
12
2003
Details
Japan
Japan

Brazil
Round-robin
Italy

Serbia and Montenegro
Round-robin
United States
12
2007
Details
Japan
Japan

Brazil
Round-robin
Russia

Bulgaria
Round-robin
United States
12
2011
Details
Japan
Japan

Russia
Round-robin
Poland

Brazil
Round-robin
Italy
12
2015
Details
Japan
Japan
12

Women[edit]

Year Host Final 3rd place match Number of teams
Champions Score Runners-up 3rd place Score 4th place
1973
Details
Uruguay
Uruguay

Soviet Union
3–0
Japan

South Korea
3–0
Peru
10
1977
Details
Japan
Japan

Japan
Round-robin
Cuba

South Korea
Round-robin
China
8
1981
Details
Japan
Japan

China
Round-robin
Japan

Soviet Union
Round-robin
United States
8
1985
Details
Japan
Japan

China
Round-robin
Cuba

Soviet Union
Round-robin
Japan
8
1989
Details
Japan
Japan

Cuba
Round-robin
Soviet Union

China
Round-robin
Japan
8
1991
Details
Japan
Japan

Cuba
Round-robin
China

Soviet Union
Round-robin
United States
12
1995
Details
Japan
Japan

Cuba
Round-robin
Brazil

China
Round-robin
Croatia
12
1999
Details
Japan
Japan

Cuba
Round-robin
Russia

Brazil
Round-robin
South Korea
12
2003
Details
Japan
Japan

China
Round-robin
Brazil

United States
Round-robin
Italy
12
2007
Details
Japan
Japan

Italy
Round-robin
Brazil

United States
Round-robin
Cuba
12
2011
Details
Japan
Japan

Italy
Round-robin
United States

China
Round-robin
Japan
12
2015
Details
Japan
Japan
12

Medals summary[edit]

Men[edit]

Rank Nation Gold Silver Bronze Total
1  Russia * 6 2 2 10
2  Brazil 2 0 3 5
3  Cuba 1 3 1 5
4  Italy 1 2 1 4
5  United States 1 0 1 2
6  Germany ^ 1 0 0 1
7  Japan 0 2 0 2
 Poland 0 2 0 2
9  Netherlands 0 1 0 1
10  Czech Republic # 0 0 2 2
11  Bulgaria 0 0 1 1
 Serbia & 0 0 1 1
Total 12 12 12 36

Women[edit]

Rank Nation Gold Silver Bronze Total
1  Cuba 4 2 0 6
2  China 3 1 3 7
3  Italy 2 0 0 2
4  Russia * 1 2 3 6
5  Japan 1 2 0 3
6  Brazil 0 3 1 4
7  United States 0 1 2 3
8  South Korea 0 0 2 2
Total 11 11 11 33
* = FIVB considers Russia as the inheritor of the records of Soviet Union and CIS.
^ = After German reunification, West Germany was renamed Germany and they absorbed East Germany with the records.
# = FIVB considers Czech Republic as the inheritor of the records of Czechoslovakia.
& = FIVB considers Serbia as the inheritor of the records of SFR Yugoslavia, FR Yugoslavia and Serbia and Montenegro.

See also[edit]

External links[edit]