Who will be the Most Valuable Player at the 2014 World Championship?


Milan, Italy,
October 12, 2014 – The Most Valuable Player (MVP), who will be crowned
following the final match of the 2014 FIVB Women’s World Championship in Italy,
will find herself in good company in Milan on Sunday.

Of the seven players who have
taken home the MVP award at World Championships since 1982, two in particular, have
made their presence felt on the volleyball courts in Italy.

China’s ‘Jenny’ Lang Ping who was the first to
receive the MVP accolade at the World Championships in 1982, finds herself on
the other side of the fence at this World Championship as coach of the China
As a player, the "Iron Hammer" as she
was fondly called, broke new ground for women’s volleyball in her country. And
after leading the USA team to a silver medal at the 2008 Olympic Games, Jenny Lang
Ping (the only woman to coach a team at this World Championship) and her team
of young Chinese players find themselves just one match within reach of a gold
semifinal win against
hosts Italy on Saturday, China are searching for their third World Championship
title after consecutive wins in 1982 and 1986. If China wins, Lang Ping will be
only the second person to win gold both as coach and as a player - a feat equaled
by her compatriot Zhang Rongfang, who was on the team that won World
Championship gold in 1982. Four years later, Rongfang coached China to the top
spot at the World Championship that was held in Prague.

Russia’s star
player Ekaterina Gamova, who came
out of retirement at the request of coach Yuri Marachev, was another past MVP who
was also present in Italy. The MVP at the last World Championship in 2010,
Gamova also previously won gold at the 2006 edition and bronze in 2002. During
her glittering career, Gamova has competed in four Olympic Games, taking home
silver medals in 2000 and 2004 and was named Best Scorer and Best Blocker in
the latter. The opposite hitter won gold at the 2002 World Grand Prix, and
claimed silver and the Best Scorer award at both the 2003 and 2006 editions. At
club level she was named Best Spiker of the Russian Cup five times.

Along with
Lang Ping and Gamova, this year’s MVP will take her place alongside a superstar
cast of players who have firmly stamped their presence in women’s volleyball

Following Lang
Ping in 1982, it was the turn of Chinese player Yang Xilan to be crowned MVP at
the 1986 World Championship in Prague, Czechoslovakia. Russia’s Irina Park
Hamchuk did her country proud by winning the title in 1990 though it would be
another eight years before another European would win its bragging rights.

Cuba’s Regla
Torres is the only player to win two MVP awards in the history of the
tournament, securing her legend status by winning it in two consecutive
Championships (1994 and 1998). She was followed by Italy’s Elisa Togut in 2002,
who was in the stands this time round in Italy to cheer on her compatriots, and
then Japan’s Yoshie Takeshita in the 2006 edition.

Who will be
the Most Valuable Player at the FIVB Volleyball Women’s World Championship
Italy 2014? Today’s the day to find out.


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