FIVB Volleyball World Grand Prix

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FIVB Volleyball World Grand Prix
Current season, competition or edition:
Current sports event 2016 FIVB Volleyball World Grand Prix
FIVB WGP logo.png
Sport Volleyball
Founded 1993
No. of teams 28
Continent International (FIVB)
Most recent
champion(s)
 Brazil (11th title)
Most titles  Brazil (11 titles)

The FIVB Volleyball World Grand Prix is a women's volleyball competition. Created in 1993, the tournament is annual. The men's version of the competition is called World League. This event should not be confused with the other international volleyball competitions, the World Championship, the World Cup and the World Grand Champions Cup.

History[edit]

Origins[edit]

Old FIVB World Grand Prix logo

World Grand Prix was created in 1993 as part of the FIVB's marketing strategy to promote the sport of volleyball by establishing annual international competitions. It was modelled after the World League, a successful event for men that had been introduced three years before.

The Grand Prix made women's volleyball very popular in East Asia; the lack of interest on the part of the audience is nevertheless still significant throughout the world. Today (2004), the competition is maintained mainly with the support of Asian investors.

The budget for prize money has been growing steadily since 1993, but at a rather slow pace. The figures have reached $1.295 million in 2004 - meager when compared to the World League's $13 million.

The predominance of Asian sponsors determined the first major break with the World League's formula. Most of the cities that host preliminary round matches are located in Asia. A host country may or may not have a national volleyball team involved in the competition. A second break was introduced in recent years: in some continents, teams must qualify to participate in the competition.

Winners[edit]

The history of Grand Prix's previous winners is a clear indication of how women's volleyball has been dominated, since the early 1990s, by four teams: Cuba, Brazil, Russia and China. Along with five-times winner USA, they are the only ones to hold a title at this competition as of 2005.

In 1993, the Cubans padded their already impressive record of a gold medal in the 1992 Olympic Games by winning the first edition of the Grand Prix. They were also running for the gold in 1994, but were defeated by an underranked Brazil: at that time, the Brazilians had never been able to catch a single medal in any major women's volleyball competition.

In the following years, Brazil proved beyond any doubt that its time as underdog was over. It lost the finals in 1995 to USA, but came back in 1996 for a second Grand Prix title, winning all the matches that made up the Final Four round in five sets.

The Brazilians withdrew from the competition in 1997, and the winner was Russia. But they were back in 1998 for another gold. Russia took revenge in 1999, and defeated Brazil in straight sets to win their second Grand Prix title.

Russia's win in 2002 made them, like Brazil, three-time winners. But the South Americans untied the score by conquering the 2004, 2005, 2006, 2008 and 2009, and, afterwards, also 2013, 2014 and 2016 editions of the tournament. The winners in 2000, 2001 and 2003 were Cuba, USA and China, respectively. Netherlands won their first trophy in 2007. USA won four gold medals in 2010, 2011, 2012, and 2015.

Competition formula[edit]

The Grand Prix's competition formula has proved less stable than the World League's. In the following years, major changes are likely to be introduced in an attempt to make women's volleyball more attractive to the audience. Some of the rules that are still in practice as of 2004 are:

  • The Grand Prix has qualification procedures. They are not the same in every continent: teams may have to play a specific qualification tournament, or may qualify based on the FIVB World Rankings.
  • The competition is divided in at least two phases: a preliminary round, with a system of rotating host cities; and one or more final rounds, with one or more host nations.
  • The preliminary round is divided in weeks. Each week, the participating teams are organized in pools, and each team plays one match against all other teams in its pool.
  • All games in a pool take place over a weekend in the same city. The cities are mostly located in Asia. Pools may be hosted in countries which are not actually involved in the competition.
  • When all matches of the preliminary round have been played, the top n teams (overall standings) qualify for the final round(s), and the remaining ones leave the competition. The value of n depends on the number of participating teams and the format that will be employed in the finals, but it is usually five or six.
  • If involved in the competition, host nation(s) automatically qualify for the final round(s).
  • The 2013 Gran Prix has seen a record number of 20 teams taking part in the competition. The first 5 plus organiser Japan qualify to the finals.[1]
  • The FIVB has tried different formats for the final round(s). Originally, it was a round-robin "Top Four" system in which four teams played against each other and the winner was determined by number of wins, set average, point average, direct confrontation. For some years now (2004), the most commonly used is a mixed format: quarter-finalists are organized in two pools, and the top two teams in each pool play semi-finals and finals according to the Olympic format.
  • In the preliminary round, a team is usually given the right to work with a list of eighteen players, from which the coach builds the twelve-player line-up that will be employed in a particular weekend. For the final round(s), only twelve players are allowed.

Appearance[edit]

China and Japan are the only teams that participated in all editions of the World Grand Prix.

  Team is currently allocated in Group 1
  Team is currently allocated in Group 2
  Team is currently allocated in Group 3
  Team is currently inactive in the World Grand Prix
National team Intercontinental Round Final Round[N 1]
App. First Last App. First Last
 China 24 1993 2016 23 1993 2016
 Japan 24 1993 2016 13 1993 2015
 Brazil 23 1993 2016 22 1993 2016
 United States 23 1993 2016 11 1995 2016
 Cuba 22 1993 2016 13 1993 2012
 Russia 20 1993 2016 16 1993 2016
 Italy 18 1994 2016 11 1999 2015
 Germany 17 1993 2016 4 2001 2009
 South Korea 17 1993 2014 4 1993 2003
 Thailand 14 2002 2016 3 2011 2016
 Dominican Republic 13 2004 2016
 Netherlands 13 1994 2016 5 2003 2016
 Poland 13 2004 2016 2 2007 2010
 Kazakhstan 7 2007 2016
 Puerto Rico 7 2009 2016
 Argentina 6 2011 2016
 Serbia 6 2011 2016 2 2011 2013
 Turkey 6 2008 2016 2 2012 2014
 Peru 5 1994 2016
 Algeria 4 2013 2016
 Bulgaria 4 2013 2016
 Canada 4 2003 2016
 Chinese Taipei 4 1994 2012
 Czech Republic 4 2013 2016
 Australia 3 2014 2016
 Belgium 3 2014 2016 1 2014 2014
 Croatia 3 2014 2016
 Kenya 3 2014 2016
 Mexico 3 2014 2016
 Colombia 2 2015 2016
 Azerbaijan 1 2006 2006

Results[edit]

Year Final host Final 3rd place match Teams
IR / FR
Champions Score Runners-up 3rd place Score 4th place
1993 Hong Kong
Hong Kong

Cuba
3–0
China

Russia
3–1
Brazil
8 / 6
1994 China
Shanghai

Brazil
Round-robin
Cuba

China
Round-robin
Japan
12 / 4
1995 China
Shanghai

United States
Round-robin
Brazil

Cuba
Round-robin
China
8 / 4
1996 China
Shanghai

Brazil
Round-robin
Cuba

Russia
Round-robin
China
8 / 4
1997 Japan
Kobe

Russia
Round-robin
Cuba

South Korea
Round-robin
Japan
8 / 4
1998 Hong Kong
Hong Kong

Brazil
3–0
Russia

Cuba
3–1
China
8 / 4
1999 China
Yuxi

Russia
3–0
Brazil

China
3–1
Italy
8 / 4
2000 Philippines
Quezon City

Cuba
3–1
Russia

Brazil
3–1
China
8 / 4
2001 Macau
Macau

United States
3–1
China

Russia
3–0
Cuba
8 / 8
2002 Hong Kong
Hong Kong

Russia
3–1
China

Germany
3–1
Brazil
8 / 4
2003 Italy
Andria

China
Round-robin
Russia

United States
Round-robin
Netherlands
12 / 6
2004 Italy
Reggio Calabria

Brazil
3–1
Italy

United States
3–0
Cuba
12 / 6
2005 Japan
Sendai

Brazil
Round-robin
Italy

China
Round-robin
Cuba
12 / 6
2006 Italy
Reggio Calabria

Brazil
3–1
Russia

Italy
3–2
Cuba
12 / 6
2007 China
Ningbo

Netherlands
Round-robin
China

Italy
Round-robin
Russia
12 / 6
2008 Japan
Yokohama

Brazil
Round-robin
Cuba

Italy
Round-robin
United States
12 / 6
2009 Japan
Tokyo

Brazil
Round-robin
Russia

Germany
Round-robin
Netherlands
12 / 6
2010 China
Ningbo

United States
Round-robin
Brazil

Italy
Round-robin
China
12 / 6
2011 Macau
Macau

United States
3–0
Brazil

Serbia
3–0
Russia
16 / 8
2012 China
Ningbo

United States
Round-robin
Brazil

Turkey
Round-robin
Thailand
16 / 6
2013 Japan
Sapporo

Brazil
Round-robin
China

Serbia
Round-robin
Japan
20 / 6
2014 Japan
Tokyo

Brazil
Round-robin
Japan

Russia
Round-robin
Turkey
28 / 6
2015 United States
Omaha

United States
Round-robin
Russia

Brazil
Round-robin
China
28 / 6
2016 Thailand
Bangkok

Brazil
3–2
United States

Netherlands
3–2
Russia
28 / 6

Medal summary[edit]

Rank Nation Gold Silver Bronze Total
1  Brazil 11 5 2 18
2  United States 6 1 2 9
3  Russia 3 6 4 13
4  Cuba 2 4 2 8
5  China 1 5 3 9
6  Netherlands 1 0 1 2
7  Italy 0 2 4 6
8  Japan 0 1 0 1
9  Germany 0 0 2 2
 Serbia 0 0 2 2
11  South Korea 0 0 1 1
 Turkey 0 0 1 1
Total 24 24 24 72

MVP by edition[edit]

Performance by team[edit]

The most successful teams, as of 2016, have been: Brazil, 11 times (1994, 1996, 1998, 2004, 2005, 2006, 2008, 2009, 2013, 2014, 2016); and United States, 6 times (1995, 2001, 2010, 2011, 2012, 2015). The competition has been won 3 times by Russia (1997, 1999, 2002), twice by Cuba (1993, 2000) and once by China (2003) and the Netherlands (2007).[2][3][4]

Team Hong Kong
1993
(8)
China
1994
(12)
China
1995
(8)
China
1996
(8)
Japan
1997
(8)
Hong Kong
1998
(8)
China
1999
(8)
Philippines
2000
(8)
Macau
2001
(8)
Hong Kong
2002
(8)
Italy
2003
(12)
Italy
2004
(12)
Japan
2005
(12)
Italy
2006
(12)
China
2007
(12)
Japan
2008
(12)
Japan
2009
(12)
China
2010
(12)
Macau
2011
(16)
China
2012
(16)
Japan
2013
(20)
Japan
2014
(28)
United States
2015
(28)
Thailand
2016
(28)
Total
 Algeria - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - 20th 28th 27th 28th 4
 Argentina - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - 14th 15th 16th 17th 19th 17th 6
 Australia - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - 27th 24th 27th 3
 Azerbaijan - - - - - - - - - - - - - 10th - - - - - - - - - - 1
 Belgium - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - 13th 10th 11th 3
 Brazil 4th 1st 2nd 1st - 1st 2nd 3rd 5th 4th 7th 1st 1st 1st 5th 1st 1st 2nd 2nd 2nd 1st 1st 3rd 1st 23
 Bulgaria - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - 9th 21st 17th 16th 4
 Canada - - - - - - - - - - 11th - - - - - - - - - - 19th 18th 19th 4
 China 2nd 3rd 4th 4th 5th 4th 3rd 4th 2nd 2nd 1st 5th 3rd 5th 2nd 5th 5th 4th 8th 5th 2nd 5th 4th 5th 24
 Chinese Taipei - 12th - - - - - - - - - - - - 12th - - 12th - 16th - - - - 4
 Colombia - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - 23rd 24th 2
 Croatia - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - 23rd 20th 21st 3
 Cuba 1st 2nd 3rd 2nd 2nd 3rd 5th 1st 4th 7th 11th 4th 4th 4th 7th 2nd - - 11th 6th 19th 20th 25th 25th 22
 Czech Republic - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - 14th 22nd 15th 18th 4
 Dominican Republic - - - - - - - - - - - 12th 11th 8th 11th 9th 11th 8th 12th 12th 10th 12th 12th 13th 13
 Germany 8th 10th 8th - - - - - 8th 3rd 7th 6th 10th - - 8th 3rd 9th 13th 7th 11th 10th 7th 12th 17
 Italy - 8th - - 6th 5th 4th 7th - - 5th 2nd 2nd 3rd 3rd 3rd - 3rd 7th 10th 5th 9th 5th 8th 18
 Japan 6th 4th 7th 8th 4th 7th 7th 8th 6th 5th 9th 9th 5th 6th 9th 6th 6th 5th 5th 9th 4th 2nd 6th 9th 24
 Kazakhstan - - - - - - - - - - - - - - 10th 12th - - 15th - 17th 24th 26th 22nd 7
 Kenya - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - 25th 21st 20th 3
 Mexico - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - 26th 28th 26th 3
 Netherlands - 9th - 7th 7th - 8th - - - 4th - 6th - 1st - 4th 7th - - 12th 14th 13th 3rd 13
 Peru - 11th - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - 16th - - 18th 22nd 23rd 5
 Poland - - - - - - - - - - - 8th 7th 12th 6th 10th 7th 6th 10th 8th 15th 16th 14th 14th 13
 Puerto Rico - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - 10th 11th - 13th 18th 15th 16th 15th 7
 Russia 3rd 7th 6th 3rd 1st 2nd 1st 2nd 3rd 1st 2nd 7th - 2nd 4th - 2nd - 4th - 7th 3rd 2nd 4th 20
 Serbia - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - 3rd 11th 3rd 7th 8th 7th 6
 South Korea 5th 5th 5th 6th 3rd 6th 6th 5th 7th - 6th 11th 9th 9th - - 12th - 9th 14th - 8th - - 17
 Thailand - - - - - - - - - 8th 9th 10th 12th 11th - 11th 8th 10th 6th 4th 13th 11th 9th 6th 14
 Turkey - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - 7th - - - 3rd 8th 4th 11th 10th 6
 United States 7th 6th 1st 5th 8th 8th - 6th 1st 6th 3rd 3rd 8th 7th 8th 4th 9th 1st 1st 1st 6th 6th 1st 2nd 23

See also[edit]

Notes[edit]

  1. ^ Since Group system was introduced in 2014, statistics of only Group 1 Final Round are included, as this is the medal round.

References[edit]

External links[edit]