Helsinki, Finland, January 13, 2009 – The FIVB World League has been named the best sports marketing event in Finland in 2008. The FIVB World League earned the award at the Finnish Sports Gala in Helsinki on Monday. The two-hour gala was broadcast live on the Finnish TV2.
The FIVB World League has become more and more popular in Finland among spectators and has earned an excellent reputation as a great sports spectacle.
Finland hosted Intercontinental Round matches against USA, Bulgaria and Spain in the 2008 FIVB World League. They finished in third place in the pool behind USA and Bulgaria with a 4-8 win-loss record.
Finnish Volleyball Association General Secretary Antti Heikkinen said, “This is an outstanding recognition for the Finnish Volleyball and for the World League. We are very happy for this great award.
In total, there were 10 different categories in the Finnish Sports Gala awards. The Finnish Sports Journalists Association, meanwhile, rewarded the best athletes, teams and coaches of the year. Sports journalists chose setter Mikko Esko as the best Finnish Volleyball player of the year in 2008. Esko is setter for the Finnish Men’s team and Italian league club Montichiari.
In 2007, sports journalists chose the men’s Volleyball national team as best team thanks to their fourth place in the European Championship in Moscow and men's national team coach Mauro Berruto as best coach.
Finland will play against Brazil, Poland and Venezuela in Pool D in the 2009 FIVB World League.