Please enjoy this guest article from 2010 Inductee Gabriella Kotsis of Hungary as she shares her story of Hungary's upset win over Brazil at the 1970 FIVB World Championship.
The 1970 FIVB Volleyball Women's World Championship was the sixth edition of the tournament organized by the world's governing body. It was held in Bulgaria from September 22 to October 2, 1970.
KOTSIS: I am here today at 93 years old. I'm very happy to have lived to see this special anniversary of 50 years. Primarily because I was able to personally assist with the first steps of volleyball in Hungary and later able to give our name to a successful era with my dear and loved players. At that time, of course, we did not think we could get into the history books with our achievements at the 1970 World Championship in Varna. We played selflessly. We were guided only by the love of volleyball. Maybe that's why my team became so successful.
It is true that we exploded into the international forefront with our World Championship result at the time almost out of obscurity and we qualified Hungarian women's volleyball for the 1972 Olympics with this as well. We caught up to the men who already had Olympic experience in the 1964 Tokyo Games. It was a huge success for us.
After that, the women continued their successful performance, both in international tournaments and in the three Olympics in which we were able to participate. This series of successes lasted for almost a decade and a half! We always finished in scoring position as we gave the best we could.
At that time, only the Soviet national team could win - several times in very close matches - against our team in Europe.
I am most proud of my team and my players, who followed my instructions with an incredible work ethic during the training sessions, almost suffering for later results.
I always said, it was the players on the court that achieved those successes. I, with the help of my excellent coaches, colleagues, only helped them to develop their talents. I'm very happy if my advice, our advice, helped them in time and the best situation. So the real merit belongs to the team, which was really, in all capital letters, a TEAM, and it was one of its great strengths.
Finally, I am also proud to have been a member of the IVHF, although I would have preferred to have given my place to my team, who would actually have been entitled to this honor.
So much time has passed since this beautiful period and unfortunately some of my former players can no longer be with us.
We also have to pay tribute to their memory on the anniversary. Rest in peace!
Dr. Gabriella KOTSIS,
2010 IVHF Inductee in the Coach Category
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