2014 world champs USA were the first to join hosts Japan in 2018 line-up
Lausanne, Switzerland, September 20, 2018 – With nine days to go to the start of the 2018 FIVB Volleyball Women’s World Championship, 24 teams representing all five continental confederations are preparing for the biggest event of the year and some of them have already physically made their way to Japan.
Quick links - Volleyball:
However, each of these teams found their own “road to Japan” through the qualification process, which started in August 2014 with the official announcement of the hosting country and lasted through October 2017, when the line-up of the worthy 24 was completed.
Japan as hosts of the World Championship and USA as reigning title-holders from 2014 were the first two teams that secured their spots in the 2018 edition.
Europe will be represented at Japan by as many as eight teams. The first six of them - Azerbaijan, Germany, Italy, Russia, Serbia and Turkey - emerged as the pool winners in the second round of CEV qualifications in May and June of 2017. An additional round of European qualifications was held in August 2017 with hosts Netherlands as pool winners and Bulgaria as runners-up booking their tickets to Japan.
Also in August 2017, Brazil won gold at the South American Championship in Colombia to become the first CSV representative in the World Championship line-up. A special continental qualification tournament was organized in Peru, where Argentina filled up the other South American vacancy on October 15 to become the last team to complete the list for Japan.
Argentina were the last team to “catch the train” to Japan
The deciding second round of Asian qualifications was held in September 2017. The two pool winners – Korea and reigning Olympic champions China – and the two pool runners-up – Thailand and Kazakhstan – secured their participation among the five AVC countries, along with hosts Japan, to fight for planetary honours.
The six available NORCECA (North and Central America and the Caribbean) vacancies were decided in September and October 2017 in three qualification pools. Canada, the Dominican Republic and Mexico topped the respective standings, while Cuba, Puerto Rico and Trinidad and Tobago finished runners-up, to join world champs USA as the continent’s representatives at Japan 2018.
The African Championship, held in Cameroon in October 2017, determined the two CAVB countries to play at the World Championship. Gold medallists Cameroon and silver medallists Kenya deserved the honour of representing their continent at Japan.
The World Championship runs from September 29 through October 20 in six Japanese cities with Yokohama hosting the semifinals and the medal matches.