Volleyball Ready for Olympic Home Coming at Tokyo 2020
LAUSANNE, Switzerland, July 24, 2019 - Lausanne, Switzerland,
July 24, 2019 - The FIVB has promised a volleyball homecoming
party one year from today when the sport returns to its Olympic
birthplace, alongside beach volleyball, at Tokyo 2020.
Volleyball was first included in the Olympic Games at Tokyo 1964
and cemented its place in the hearts of the Japanese public when
their women’s national team won Olympic gold and their men’s
team secured bronze. Known as the ‘Witches of the Orient’ for
their spellbinding performances, the Japanese women’s team’s
final against the Soviet Union in 1964 was watched by more than
two thirds of the entire country.
The Japanese men’s team reached the pinnacle of the sport eight
years later when they won gold at the Munich 1972 Olympic Games
and in 1976 in Montreal the women’s team also returned to the
top of the podium. Japan ranks as the fourth most successful
Olympic volleyball nation, with three gold, three silver and
three bronze medals.
Since its debut in 1964 volleyball has grown to become one of
the most popular sports at the Olympic Games. Volleyball and
beach volleyball events completely sold out the last two Olympic
Games, and volleyball was the number one sport by accumulated
hours of viewership at Rio 2016, according to the IOC Data
The FIVB is looking to build on this success and there is no
reason why volleyball and beach volleyball will not sell out
once again in Tokyo. Volleyball remains one of Japan’s most
loved sports. A recent national survey reported that 35 percent
of people between 12 and 21 are looking forward to watching the
sport more than any other in 2020.
"There is a great historical connection between the FIVB and
Japan and we want to celebrate that in Tokyo,” FIVB President
Dr. Ary S. Graça F° said, “It is a wonderful opportunity to
connect our sport’s illustrious past with the exciting future
that we are creating.”
For both volleyball and beach volleyball the FIVB is continuing
to lead the way in developing pioneering fan engagement,
entertainment and sports presentation initiatives to ensure the
very best experience at its competitions. With courtside DJs and
MCs, as well as instant replays broadcast in the arena, fans can
easily follow the narrative in each match and become an integral
part of creating an up-tempo, exciting atmosphere. For those
watching around the world, the FIVB’s partnerships with IMG and
Microsoft have raised the quality of television production and
introduced the Federation’s first Over-The-Top (OTT) streaming
service, Volleyball TV.
In Tokyo, national teams will compete in the Ariake Arena, a
brand new stadium, purpose-built for the Olympic Games. As a
permanent venue, there are additional legacy benefits that the
12,000-seater stadium will provide to local residents and
businesses. Aside from hosting volleyball, the Arena will be
utilised for other sporting events, concerts and conventions.
Beach volleyball matches will take place at the spectacular
Shiokaze Park on the Tokyo waterfront.
“When the Tokyo 2020 Organising Committee decided to invest in
the Ariake Arena, it was a great day for the FIVB and Japanese
volleyball,” President Graça said. “This state-of-the-art
stadium will inspire the next generation of Japanese volleyball
players, not just during the Games but for years to come.”