“Volleyball to-day is the world`s No.1 mass sport,” said by Paul Libaud in 1979, the then President of the International Volleyball Federation.
At that time, athletics had a following of 20 million, football 25 million and surprisingly volleyball had 40 million supporters.
Libaud also said, “The unpretentious quality of the game, its athleticism, simple rules and high emotional pitch make it a true treasure of sports. We can declare with full justification that our planet is mad on volleyball.”
While there was little more than 60 national federations in 1962, the number had more than doubled. This is undoubtedly due to the inclusion of the game in the Olympics of 1964. The competition is so severe that the gap between the top teams is being reduced each year.
The origin of volleyball is being disputed. Some say that a few firemen from an obscure little town in North America on a summer day, last century, tied a piece of string between two posts and started to toss an inflated ball back and forth. That`s how volleyball began.
Another theory is that William G. Morgan of the U.S. raised the tennis net to a height of about two meters and then threw a basketball over it. However, the most authentic theory is that the Idea was conceived in the famous Springfield College (equally known for basketball). But the Americans neglected it and the game took more rapid strides in Europe and Africa.