The FIVB has revealed the logo for the inaugural Volleyball Nations League that will begin on May 15 and run through July 8.
The competition replaces the FIVB World League (men) and World Grand Prix (women) with a more unified name and a new format. The format change moves the competition to hold just 16 teams per gender with each team competing in a minimum of 15 matches over 5 weeks of play. There will be the core group that will feature 12 teams along with 4 challenger teams that will be fighting for a spot in the core group for the next season. The top-5 teams including the hosts will compete in the Final Round of the competition. The men’s side of the competition has announced France as the host of the finals in Lille, France at the Stade Pierre Mauroy.
Additionally, the FIVB has announced a conjoining event – the FIVB Volleyball Challenger Cup – that will run in conjunction with the Nations League. The winner of the event will earn the right to participate in the FIVB Promotional Playoff – competing against the fourth-ranked challenger team at the end of round-robin play in the Nations League. The winner of this playoff match will automatically earn a spot at the 2019 FIVB Nations League.
Recently the pools were announced for the Nations League, along with the host country for each of the pools. The core teams on the men’s side are Argentina, Brazil, China, France, Germany, Iran, Italy, Japan, Poland, Russia, Serbia, the USA while the challengers will be Australia, Bulgaria, Canada and Korea. On the women’s side, the core teams will be Brazil, China, Germany, Italy, Japan, Korea, the Netherlands, Russia, Serbia, Thailand, Turkey and the USA with the challengers being, Argentina, Belgium, the Dominican Republic and Poland.
Tickets for the events in May and June are up for grabs around the world. Spectators will have the option to purchase a ticket to watch just one day of matches or to buy all-session passes that will allow them to attend all the matches over the course of the weekend.