Competing as Serbia and Montenegro, the 2006 World Championship represented a leap forward for volleyball in Serbia. They claimed their first medal in the history of the tournament after only competing once before, as Yugoslavia in 1978. In Japan in 2006, they lost just one match across the two pool stages but were defeated 3-1 by Brazil in their semifinal. They rallied to beat Italy in straight sets to secure bronze. Four years ago Serbia came second in their first round pool, but missed out on a semifinal spot following defeats to Russia and Turkey in the second round. Further defeats against Italy and Germany left them in eighth position.
The Serbian women's programme has become much envied over the past decade as the team have developed into genuine medal contenders. In 2007 they claimed silver at the European Championship, while 2008 marked their first Olympic appearance when they finished fifth. They competed at London 2012, but failed to win match after a series of injuries to key players. They won the European League three times between 2009 and 2011. Taking gold at the 2011 European Championship and bronze at the 2011 and 2013 World Grand Prix further boosted their reputation. Most recently though they faltered at the 2014 World Grand Prix as they failed to qualify for the Final Six.