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2002 World League

World League 2002 Schedule

The FIVB World League Council, meeting in Lausanne, (WC 24 Sept.) confirmed that Brazil would host the 2002 World League Finals.

“It is very important for us,” said Brazilian Volleyball Federation President, Mr Dr. Ary DA SILVA GRAÇA FILHO after the announcement.

“Last year we increased three per cent against football in Brazil – and as we won this year [the World League], I felt it was a very good opportunity to show to the Brazilian public our winning team, and gain a few more percentage points against football,” he said

Also determined at the Council meeting were the sixteen teams, dates, pools and prize money.

The sixteen teams that will compete for the US$15 million dollars in prize money are Brazil, Argentina, China, Cuba, France, Germany, Greece, Italy, Japan, The Netherlands, Poland, Portugal, Russia, Spain, Venezuela and Yugoslavia.

The 2002 World League will consist of a six-weekend Intercontinental Round played in sixteen countries, starting 28-30 June, 2002, (then 5-7 July, 12-14 July, 19-21 July, 26-28 July and 2-4 August), with the World League Finals to be held in Brazil, 12-18 August 2002.

The Intercontinental Round will consist of four pools of four teams (sixteen teams), with twelve matches for each team; two matches each weekend for six weekends. There will be three home matches and three away matches.

The World League Finals will consist of two pools of four teams (eight teams), playing a total of sixteen matches, including semi-finals and finals.

The pool play for the finals will be held in two cities in Brazil, with the semi-finals and finals held in one city (cities to be confirmed).

The four Pools for the Intercontinental Round will be:

Pool A - Brazil, Poland, Argentina, Portugal 

Pool B - Italy, Spain, China, Venezuela 

Pool C - Russia, Cuba, Netherlands, Germany 

Pool D - Yugoslavia, France, Greece, Japan

Note: Pools and dates are subject to final confirmation by FIVB in January 2002. The 2 cities for the finals will be selected in January 2002

 

Brazil 

2001 Champions!

Brazil, a disappointing sixth at last year's Olympic Games, came into the final match of the US$15 million 2001 World League the only undefeated team of the finals series.

They had dropped only four sets in its four matches over Poland (3-1), Olympic champions Yugoslavia (3-1), France (3-0) and Russia (3-2) in the semi-final. 

Italy had also been in magnificent form, losing its first match 2:3 to Russia in what was certainly one of the games of the series. The World Champions then went on to defeat The Netherlands 3-1, whitewashed in-form Cuba 3-0, and then finished off Yugoslavia 3-2 in the semi-finals.

Both teams started with the same starting line-ups as the previous nights semi-finals wins. Brazil, with four members of its Sydney 2000 Olympic squad starting in this match (Mauricio, Giba, Nalbert and Gustavo), while Italy featured five Sydney Olympians in its squad (Mastrangelo, Rosalba, Fei, Giombini and Corsano), with all starting.

Even though Brazil had arguably been the in-form team of the series, there was almost an expectation that Italy, winner of eight previous World League titles, was the only team that could put together a defensive strategy to upset the Brazilian offence, as they so effectively did against Cuba.

But Brazil, with the usually reserved new coach Bernardo Rezende yelling instructions to the team from almost on the court, had done their homework. The Brazilian style of play, their expansive offensive options offered under the legendary veteran setter Mauricio Lima, their overall court speed and rhythm, won the day over Italy in three straight sets.

Brazil is the new 2001 World League champion.