Both Cuban women's
and men's volleyball teams have won international fame.
The Women's team;
three times world champion: 1978, 1994 and 1998. Since the '70s
they rank amongst the first six teams of the world. Twice Olympic
Champions: in Barcelona and Atlanta. In these last Games they
lost against Brazil and Russia in the classification stage,
creating some doubts. But later, after spectacular victories
against Brazil and China, they received the Gold medal. Mireya
Luis, Regla Torres, Regla Bell and Magalys Carvajal had much
to do with this second Olympic success. One of the veteran players
is Mireya Luis, beloved by her fans. She has been playing with
the Cuban National Team since the age of fifteen and has played
a leading role in all their victories. Regla Bell was elected
the "Best Player in the World Championship in 1998". They are
all acclaimed as "The Spectacular Brunette Women of the Caribbean".
The Men's team
does not have so many spectacular achievements. Nevertheless,
they won Gold medals in the 1989 World Cup and the 1998 World
Championship. Some very impressive players for Cuba and the
world are: Veteran Joel Despaigne renowned for his strong volleys.
Raul Diago, for excellent passes, at the last World Championship.
The International Federation has also acknowledged Osvaldo Hernandez
and Ihosvany Hernandez. This team was placed sixth at the Atlanta