Montreux, Switzerland, 28. August 2018 - Russia is considered a true Volleyball titan. The “Sbornaya” - how the Russian squad is called by their fans - are one of the most successful teams in the history of international women’s Volleyball. The team from the largest country in the world are the number one in the all-time medal table of the FIVB Volleyball Women’s World Championships too. The “Sbornaya” have set the impressive record of 7 gold, 2 silver, and 4 bronze medals at the FIVB’s prime event - having missed out on a medal just twice in 1982 and 2014.
But the Russian squad have been on the move in the last two years. After a disappointing exit in the quarterfinals of the Rio 2016 Olympic Games as well as at 2017 the CEV Volleyball European Championship, the Russian Volleyball federation VFV decided to rebuild the “Sbornaya”. As a first step of the process, the federation will announce a new head coach of the national teams in the upcoming months. Rumours say that the Russian federation are about to appoint a big name from international women’s Volleyball.
In this difficult period for Russian Volleyball, all eyes will be on Tatiana Kosheleva and Nataliya Goncharova at the Montreux Volley Masters, which will serve the Russians as their last chance to impress before the FIVB Volleyball Women’s World Championship. The two shooting stars led the Russian “Sbornaya” to success at the 2010 FIVB Volleyball Women’s World Championship, the 2013 and 2015 CEV Volleyball European Championship as well as to silver at the 2009 and 2015 in the FIVB Volleyball World Grand Prix. At club level, on the other hand, Kosheleva undergirded her reputation as one of the best wing spikers in women’s Volleyball as she led her former club Eczacibasi VitrA Istanbul to the back-to-back title at the FIVB Volleyball Women’s Club World Championship in 2016.
Volleyball experts are sure that the two setbacks of the last year have awakened the Volleyball giant. Because Tatiana Kosheleva and Nataliya Goncharova as well as her teammates are willing to give everything in their power to bring their nation back to the top of international women’s Volleyball. Therefore, Volleyball fans can look forward to a strong Russian side at the 33rd Montreux Volley Masters.