Poland and Slovenia to replace Russia as hosts of the FIVB Volleyball Men’s World Championship 2022

Russia was removed as host in early March after their invasion of Ukraine

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Tokyo 2020 Olympics - Volleyball - Men's Quarterfinal - Poland v France - Ariake Arena, Tokyo, Japan – August 3, 2021. Team members of Poland celebrate. REUTERS/Carlos Garcia Rawlins
Tokyo 2020 Olympics - Volleyball - Men's Quarterfinal - Poland v France - Ariake Arena, Tokyo, Japan – August 3, 2021. Team members of Poland celebrate. REUTERS/Carlos Garcia Rawlins

The Fédération Internationale de Volleyball (FIVB) announced Poland and Slovenia as the new hosts of the FIVB Volleyball Men’s World Championship 2022 on Friday. The pair take over from Russia, who lost the right to host the event after initiating an invasion of Ukraine.

Polish Prime Minister Mateusz Morawiecki told Reuters, “Russia were supposed to be the hosts of the volleyball world championships, but can you imagine that everyone would listen to the Russian anthem as if nothing had happened. This is why we protested against it.”

Russia was removed as host of the men’s world championship in early March, when the FIVB announced it was seeking an alternate host for the event. Poland, who are reigning world champions in men’s volleyball, offered to host along with Slovenia.

Commenting on the announcement of Poland and Slovenia as hosts of the FIVB Volleyball Men’s World Championship 2022, FIVB President Ary Graça stated, “The FIVB is delighted that the volleyball loving nations of Poland and Slovenia will welcome the volleyball family this summer for one of the biggest celebrations in our sport. Both countries have a proven track record of hosting FIVB events and are well equipped to host an exceptional Men’s World Championship.”

Tokyo 2020 Olympics - Volleyball - Men's Pool A - Poland v Canada - Ariake Arena, Tokyo, Japan – August 1, 2021. General view during the match. REUTERS/Valentyn Ogirenko
Tokyo 2020 Olympics - Volleyball - Men's Pool A - Poland v Canada - Ariake Arena, Tokyo, Japan – August 1, 2021. General view during the match. REUTERS/Valentyn Ogirenko

He added, “I would like to offer my sincerest gratitude [to] all the nations who expressed an interest in stepping up at volleyball’s time of need. For me, the way the volleyball family has come together in solidarity at this time has been very touching, and we are proud to have been able to find such an amazing solution.”

Both Poland and Slovenia had already qualified for the men’s world championship, making the relocation a convenient swap.

The prior qualification of both host countries also freed up a spot at the men’s world championship after the FIVB decided to bar athletes, clubs, and teams representing Russia from competing in international and continental tournaments. Ukraine was invited to fill the open slot by the FIVB, since they were the next highest ranked team according to the World Ranking.

While the FIVB has confirmed Poland and Slovenia as hosts of the men’s world championship, an announcement of further host countries in the future is a possibility according to the federation.

The FIVB has yet to explicitly confirm the dates of the relocated FIVB Volleyball Men’s World Championship 2022. However, Reuters reports the tournament will be held between the originally scheduled dates of August 26 and September 11, 2022.

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