Excitement builds as FIVB World Grand Champions Cup match pairings announced
Tokyo, Japan, September 24, 2013 – The match pairings for the FIVB World Grand Champions Cup for men and women was unveiled at a ceremony in Tokyo on Tuesday, creating a line-up of matches that promises to produce yet another round of top notch international volleyball this November.
The FIVB Volleyball World Grand Champions Cup features a total of six teams per gender with hosts Japan being joined by the winners of the continental championships carried out in Asia, Europe, NORCECA and South America with an additional country selected by the FIVB, host broadcasters NTV and the host federation, JVA. Africa do not have an automatic spot in the tournament after finishing the 2012 Olympic Games as the lowest ranked confederation among the five.
The six women’s teams, qualified for the tournament through their respective Continental Championships, will meet in Japan from November 12 to 17. The qualified teams include Japan (host), USA (winner of NORCECA Women’s Continental Championship), Brazil (winner of the Women’s South American Championship), Thailand (winner of the 17th Asian Senior Women’s Volleyball Championship), Russia (winner of the 2013 CEV Volleyball European Championship - Women) and one other country selected at a later date by the FIVB/NTV/JVA.
Of the six teams that will take part in the men’s competition, only Japan (host) and Brazil (winner of the Men’s South American Championship) are currently confirmed.
The countries that will represent Europe and the NORCECA will be known after these continents’ qualifying events are completed this weekend. The final match of the 2013 CEV Volleyball European Championship – Men will take place on Sunday in Denmark with the winner qualifying for the Grand Champions Cup as well the 2014 Men’s World Championship in Poland. The winner of the NORCECA Men’s Continental Championship will also be decided on Sunday in Langley, Canada.
The AVC Men’s Continental Championship scheduled to take place in Dubai from September 28 to October 6 will determine the second Asian country that will join hosts, Japan in the men’s competition.
The men’s and women’s competition will be held in a single-round robin system where the top ranked team, after five match days, will become the champions.
The women’s tournament will see USA take on Brazil in one of three matches scheduled for the opening day of the tournament. 2012 Olympic Champions and 2013 World Grand prix title holders, Brazil will go head-to-head with well-known rivals USA, while hosts and world No. 3 Japan will take on Russia and world No. 16, Thailand will face the FIVB/NTV/JVA selection in the tournament.
Brazil – who will be defending their 2009 Grand Champions Cup title – will open the action on day one of the men’s competition, when they play the AVC contender in the tournament. The other two matches on the opening day will see hosts Japan play against NORCECA while the FIVB/NTV/JVA selection will face their European rival in the tournament.
The match pairings were decided at an event supervised by FIVB Sports Events Council Member, Yoshiharu Nishiwaki. Sachiko Sugiyama (former Japan women’s national team player) carried out the draw for the women’s competition while Takahiro Yamamoto (former player for the Japan men’s national team) did the same for the men’s.
Masayoshi Manabe, the coach of Japan women’s national team, and Haruhito Kuwada, general manager of the Japan men’s national team also attended the event.
Yuichiro Hamu, President of Japan Volleyball Association said, “Tokyo was recently chosen as the host city for Olympic Games 2020 in Japan. We hope the FIVB World Grand Champions Cup will open the door for future events. The organiser will put every effort forward to make this tournament a success.”
Also in attendance was Yoshinobu Kosugi, Senior Executive Board Director of NTV, the host broadcaster tasked with bringing the action of the tournament to volleyball fans around the world. “NTV would like to deliver to fans the speed and the power of volleyball as well as the spirit of the players,” said a enthusiastic Kosugi.
Past winners of the women’s FIVB World Grand Champions Cup were Cuba (1993), Russia (1997), China (2001), Brazil (2005), and Italy (2009). The men’s title has been won by Italy (1993), Brazil (1997, 2005 and 2009) and Cuba (2001).
Women’s Match Pairings
Men’s Match Pairings