Volleyball was introduced for the first time in the
Dominican Republic by the United
States Marine Corps in 1916, the fast-growing
Carribean country has been taking giant strides on
the international scene.
The Dominican Republic participated for the first
time in an international event in the year 1934. On
this occasion the Caribbean Volleyball tournament
was held in the city of Port of Prince, Haiti. 12
years later the national men's and women's teams
participated for the first time in the
Centroamerican and Caribbean Sport Games, held in
the city of Barranquilla, Colombia, where the
women’s team won gold.
In 1974, the Dominican Republic made its first
appearance at the Volleyball World Championship when
the national women's team competed in Mexico,
finishing 21st. Four years later they participated
again, this time in the Russian city of Moscow,
improving by two places to 19th.
By 1997, the women’s team was going from strength to
strength collecting the bronze medal at the Norceca
Continental Championship before finishing in 11th
spot at the 1998 World Championship in Japan.
In 1999, a 4th place finish at the Pan-American
Games in Canada was followed by a silver medal at
the Continental Championship held in the city of
Santo Domingo, after losing the final 3-2 to world
By 2002, many of the national Dominican Republic
players were good enough to play in the Pro-Leagues
of Europe, (Italy and Spain in particular) and this
helped the development of the players. A silver
medal at the Pan-American Cup in Mexico was another
superb result after losing the final 3-1 to Cuba
again. But 2002 finished on a disappointing note
after the national team finished 13th at the World
However, 2003 became a fruitful and historical year
for the Dominican Republic with the team
participating in the Montreux Volley Masters
Tournament for the first time. The tournament
provided a good launch pad for the season which saw
the Dominicans finish second behind USA at the
second Women’s Pan-American Cup in Mexico, first at
the XIV Pan-American Games on their home soil,
second at the International Volleyball Challenge
Tournament in Hong Kong and third at the 2003
NORCECA Women’s Continental Championship, which
granted them a wild card to the 2003 World Cup where they failed to
cause any upsets and finished 10th.
But this didn't douse the spirit of the Dominicans
because 2004 saw some more firsts. They participated
in the World Grand Prix for the first time, where
they finished 12th out of 12 teams (but only on set
ratio difference after they were one of three teams
to finish the preliminary round with one victory), and they also competed in the Olympic Games for the
first time in Athens, where they fnished 11th having
claimed the prized scalp of the world number one
team at the time USA.
The 2005 World Grand Prix now shapes as an excellent
platform for the world number 12 to make further
steps up the ladder of international women's
Overall Standings for the Dominican Republic
Word Grand Prix Played
Total Matches played
Prof. Francisco Cruz Jiménez
Having first studied as a Volleyball coach in 1964 and begun work as a Volleyball instructor in 1967, 53-year-old Cuban Francisco Cruz Jiménez brings plenty of experience into the coaching circle for the Dominican Republic.
Following last year’s 11th place finish at the Olympic Games, Jiménez, who has been involved extensively in the Dominican Republic Women’s Volleyball Program as a coach and instructor, was called on to replace compatriot Jorge Garbey, who had been head coach since the start of 2003, and there’s no doubt Jiménez’s experience will be valuable for a young and promising Dominican side.
Jiménez, who has coached in Cuba and Peru and acted as the Director of the Dominican Republic High Performance Volleyball Development Center, was part of the coaching staff of the Cuban men’s youth Volleyball team from 1971-1975.
In 1977 he became the Instructor at the University of Physical Culture and Sports of Cuba leading more than 170 National and International Volleyball Technicians from Syria, Gana, Panama, Peru, Sir Lanka, etc.
In 1995 Jiménez helped with the preparation of the Women’s Youth Volleyball team of Peru and since 2001 he has been a part of the Dominican Republic Women’s Youth & Junior Programs, participating in several international events as head coach, including; the 2001 FIVB Women’s Junior World Championship (9th place), the 2001 FIVB Girl’s Youth World Championship (8th place), the 2002 NORCECA Women’s Junior Continental Championship (4th Place), the 2002 NORCECA Girls Youth Continental Championship (Silver Medal) and the 2004 NORCECA Junior Continental Championship (Silver Medal).