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Meet the Class of 2019

IVHF Induction Class of 2019


MIRKA FRANCIA (CUBA) – FEMALE INDOOR PLAYER

Highlights:

  • Helped Cuba to gold medals in the 1996 and 2000 Olympic Games
  • Assisted Cuba to gold medals in the 1994 and 1998 FIVB World Championship
  • Named Best Blocker of 1999 FIVB World Cup as Cuba won gold
  • In FIVB World Grand Prix, earned two gold medals (1993, 2000), three silvers (1994, 1996, 1997) and two bronzes (1995, 1998)
  • Played club volleyball in Italy since 1998-season and acquired Italian citizenship in 2004

BORIS GYUDEROV (BULGARIA) – MALE INDOOR PLAYER

Highlights:

  • Competed in inaugural 1964 Olympic Games for volleyball
  • Captain of Bulgarian Men’s National Team for 17 consecutive years and played professionally for 21 years
  • Helped Bulgaria win bronze at 1949 and 1952 FIVB World Championships
  • Selected to Best Six Players of 1952 World Championship and Best Spiker at 1956 World Championship
  • Played in five European Championships, including silver finish in 1952

ZE MARCO DE MELO (BRAZIL) – MALE BEACH PLAYER

Highlights:

  • Played in two Olympic Games, earning the silver medal at the 2000 Sydney Games
  • Three-time FIVB Tour Champion in 1996, 1997 and 2000
  • Captured 26 titles on the FIVB Tour, all between 1995 and 2000
  • Medaled in 56 of 94 events on the FIVB Tour, including 54 of 80 from 1995 to 2000
  • Earned $850,000-plus in career winnings on FIVB Tour

VALENTINA OGIENKO (RUSSIA) – FEMALE INDOOR PLAYER

Highlights:

  • Middle blocker on Russia National Team from 1983 to 1998
  • Helped Soviet Union win the gold medal at the 1988 Olympic Games and the silver medal for the Unified Team at the 1992 Olympic Games
  • Helped Russia capture three consecutive FIVB World Championship medals with the gold in 1990, followed by bronze medals in 1994 and 1998

VASIL SIMOV (BULGARIA) – COACH

Highlights:

  • Vasil Simov competed for the Bulgarian national team participating in two European and four FIVB World Championships.
  • Simov led the Bulgarian women’s national team to a bronze medal at the 1980 Moscow Olympics along with a bronze medal at the European Championship in 1979 and a European Title in 1981 in Sofia. 
  • Under his leadership, the Bulgarian men's national team won the bronze medal at the European Championship in Berlin in 1983.
  • Simov coached his CSKA Sofia club teams to four championship titles with the women's team and three with the men's. 

JOSEF TESAR (CZECH REPUBLIC) – MALE INDOOR PLAYER

Highlights:

  • Led Czechoslovakia to gold in the 1956 FIVB World Championship in Paris after his team won back-to-back silver medals in the first two World Championships in 1949 and 1952.
  • Helped Czechoslovakia to three European Championships in 1948 (inaugural edition), 1955, 1958.
  • Earned European Championship silver medal in 1950

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