Home » Has volleyball ever had a bigger rivalry? (VIDEO)

Has volleyball ever had a bigger rivalry? (VIDEO)

by WoV

Of course, we are talking about the rivalry between female teams of Brazil in Cuba back in the 90s. Some of their matches even ended up with a fight!

Those were the two best teams in those years. Far the best. It has all started on the Grand Prix 1994 in Shanghai. Cuba arrived in China as the Olympic Champion from 1992, and the reigning winner of the Grand Prix from 1993, while Brazil has just becoming the volleyball powerhouse. But, green and yellows shocked the big favorite and took the Grand Prix trophy!

It was a big surprise and a big boost for Brazil in front of the World Championship which took place just a month later. And the host of the tournament was Brazil! However in the packed arena in Sao Paulo, Cubans had they revenge, as they defeated home side by 3-0 in took the gold medal!

Relationship between two teams has already started to go into the wrong direction, and everything was about to escalate two years later… The major event of 1996 were the Olympic Games in Atlanta and draw put Brazil and Cuba face to face in the semifinal. The tension was high, and everybody could feel it. Eventually, a tie-break thriller ended with a victory of Cuba, and with a fight! Instead of shaking hands, players started insulting and threatening to each other, and created one of the worst scenes in the history of Olympic volleyball tournaments.

But, two teams still had one more big tournament in that year. The Grand Prix 1996. Brazil was the winner this time and seized one more Grand Prix title, but after the match it was Atlanta all over again. Perhaps even worse! After scoring the last point Brazilians starter taunting Cubans, and Regla Torres could not just watch that. She started running all around court with her fist high in the air. She wanted to punch some Brazilian player, she almost punched her teammate for standing on her way!

Luckily that was the last major incident between two teams, although there were more epic matches in that decade. Brazil won another Grand Prix battle in 1998, while Cuba won the semifinal clash at the World Championship 1998 and the semifinal at the Olympic Games in Sidney in 2000.

 

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