Lausanne, December 10, 2008 – The FIVB has awarded Serbia the honour of hosting the Final Round of the 2009 FIVB World League, the 20th anniversary edition of Volleyball’s flagship annual men’s competition.
The Final Round is set to take place through July 22-26, 2009, at Belgrade Arena in Serbia’s capital city. The famous venue, which hosted the successful 2005 FIVB World League Final Round, has undergone renovations that have set the seating capacity at 18,386 for Volleyball matches.
Serbia beat out tough competition from USA and China to host the grand finale. With the World League formula remaining unchanged, the Final Round will be contested by the automatically qualified host team, the four top-ranked teams from the Intercontinental Round pools and a wild card chosen by the FIVB.
FIVB President Jizhong Wei said he was extremely happy that the climax of the 20th anniversary edition of the World League will be in Serbia after the memorable occasion of the 2005 Final Round and praised the venue of Belgrade Arena.
FIVB World League Council President Francesco Franchi said, “Serbia faced tough competition from USA and China in the bidding process for this prestigious event and it is of enormous credit to the Serbian Volleyball Federation that they were the ones chosen.”
Serbian Volleyball Federation President and FIVB Executive Vice President Aleksandar Boricic said, “We are really pleased to again be given the opportunity to host the Final Round. All the Volleyball fans in Serbia were hoping we would be given the chance to bring this spectacular show back to Belgrade Arena. I am very proud of our Ministry of Sport, the local government, the city of Belgrade and our sponsors in making our fans’ dreams come true.”
The FIVB World League Council at its annual meeting in September chose Argentina and the Netherlands to replace Spain and Egypt in the 2009 edition. The other teams set to take part in the 16-team competition are the Serbians, runners-up in 2008, last year’s winners USA, eight-time champions Italy, seven-time winners Brazil, Poland, Finland, Venezuela, China, Russia, Japan, Cuba, Bulgaria, France and Korea.
The 2008 FIVB World League was another huge success with 2,080 hours of television coverage worldwide (excluding news coverage), with 35 percent of it live match coverage. The gold-medal match between USA and Serbia in Rio de Janeiro was broadcast in more than 100 countries.
A new record was set for World League attendance. A total of 665,000 spectators attended the 106 Intercontinental and Final Round matches, beating the 2001 record of 649,000.
Once again, more than US$20 million Prize Money was distributed among the 16 competing teams.
FIVB World League 2009 pool composition:
For all the latest information on the 2009 FIVB World League go to: