VOLLEYBALL Preview: Women’s World Cup starts with U.S.-Kenya on Saturday

Hitter Annie Drews leads the U.S. women into the FIBA women's World Cup in Japan (Phoio: FIVB)

The quadrennial FIVB World Cup begins for women on Saturday (14th) and continues through the 29th, with the men to follow from 1-15 October.

This is a round-robin tournament with 12 teams and no championship matches. The 2018 World Champions, Serbia, and the 2018 and 2019 Nations League winners, the U.S. are among the favorites. The tournament format:

Round 1 ~ Yokohama: Cameroon, Russia, China, Korea, Japan, Dominican Rep.
Round 1 ~ Hamamatsu: United States, Kenya, Argentina, Netherlands, Serbia, Brazil

Round 2 ~ Sapporo: Dominican Rep., Kenya, China, Brazil, Japan, United States
Round 2 ~ Toyama: Korea, Argentina, Cameroon, Netherlands, Russia, Serbia

Round 3 ~ Osaka: all 12 teams

Look here for results.

This is the 13th edition of the women’s World Cup, which began back in 1973. It has been held in Japan continuously since the second playing in 1977. The most successful teams have been China and Cuba, each with four titles. In 2015, China was the winner, with Serbia second, the U.S. third and Russia fourth. The U.S. women have won a medal in each of the last four World Cups, finishing 3-3-2-3 from 2003-15.