COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. (Sept. 9, 2020) – Get ready, America! The U.S. Women’s National Team has one tournament in the United States prior to heading to the Tokyo Olympic Games. As the only host in the country, Wichita, Kan., will be front-and-center on Team USA’s journey to Tokyo. Additionally, the 2021 Volleyball Nations League (VNL) is the first time the team will compete together since 2019.
The U.S. Women will host Belgium, Japan and Turkey during their FIVB Volleyball Nations League domestic preliminary round matches, which will now be held June 1-3, 2021. The four-team round-robin match format will take place at Charles Koch Arena on the Wichita State University campus.
Tickets are currently on sale at goshockers.com and will be allocated on a first-come, first-serve basis.
“Next year’s FIVB Volleyball Nations League Week Four in Wichita will be a huge one,” U.S. Women’s National Team Head Coach Karch Kiraly said. “It’ll be one of our first chances to compete together since the coronavirus lockdown, one of our last chances to prepare for the Tokyo Olympics, and the only opportunity for American volleyball fans to watch and cheer their USA Olympic women’s volleyball representatives live, so we’re looking forward to an amazing atmosphere at Koch Arena.”
Match Schedule (All Times Central)
- June 1: Japan vs. Turkey, 4 p.m.; USA vs. Belgium, 7:30 p.m.
- June 2: Turkey vs. Belgium, 4 p.m.; USA vs. Japan, 7:30 p.m.
- June 3: Japan vs. Belgium, 4 p.m.; USA vs. Turkey, 7:30 p.m.
“This is an amazing opportunity for Wichita – both in exposure for the city and incredible entertainment for locals – and we’re beyond thrilled that Wichitans will have the chance to see the U.S. Women’s National Team compete at Charles Koch Arena before they head to the Olympics in Japan,” said Josh Howell, sports sales manager at Visit Wichita. “Big things are brewing when it comes to sporting events in Wichita, and this is yet another way for sports fans in this city to be a part of a tremendous and unique competition in 2021.”
The VNL, an annual international tournament, is a 16-country league comprised of 12 core teams and four challenger teams who compete in a round-robin format over the course of five weeks. Each country plays 15 pool play matches with each core country hosting at least one round-robin pool of four teams.
The top five countries through the 15-match schedule join host China for the VNL Finals on July 1-5.
Team USA is ranked second in the world, while Japan is ranked No. 7, Turkey is No. 12 and Belgium is No. 19. The U.S. Women, Japan and Turkey have qualified for the Tokyo Olympic Games.
Wichita has hosted international volleyball events in the past. The U.S. Men’s National Team played FIVB World League matches at the arena in 2009, 2010 and 2013.