The 27th edition of FIVB Volleyball World League in 2016 expands to 36 teams
With 36 teams competing across three groups, the 2016 FIVB Volleyball World League, the 27th edition of the event, is the biggest ever in the history of the tournament.
Defending champions France, reigning world champions Poland and reigning Olympic champions Russia, plus other powerhouses like USA, Brazil and Italy will contest the title at the most prestigious annual tournament in the world of men’s volleyball. This will be the last true test for the teams that will then head off to Rio de Janeiro for the 2016 Olympic Games.
With four more teams than last year, the FIVB World League, which has thrilled hundreds of millions of fans around the world since its debut in 1990, continues its spectacular growth. The year’s tournament will run for 5 weeks, shortened from its usual duration as is the case in all Olympic years.
The Intercontinental Round will begin on June 17 and will culminate with the World League Finals on July 17.
Chinese Taipei, Qatar and Slovenia – the wonder team of the 2015 European Championship – will all be making their FIVB World League debut in 2016. They bring the total number of countries to have played in the World League to 36.
Brazil and Italy are the only two countries to have participated in all 26 previous editions of the FIVB World League.
All the former winners are also back in action: Brazil (nine titles), Italy (eight), Russia (three), USA (two), world champions Poland, Cuba, the Netherlands and defending champions France (one title each).
The tournament began with just eight countries, who took part in the inaugural competition in 1990. In 1991 the number of teams had risen to 10, while 12 nations competed from 1992-2000 and 2004-05. The field featured 16 teams from 2001-2003 and 2006-2012. 2013 saw 18 different countries compete, with that increasing to 28 in 2014 and 32 in 2015 before reaching the new high of 36 for 2016.The records continue as the FIVB Volleyball World League enters its 26th edition which is set to be the biggest ever in the history of the tournament.