Six nations booked their spot to the Olympics after winning their respective pools at the 2019 Men’s Intercontinental Olympic Qualification Tournament. 24 nations were split into six groups around the globe with the winner booking their spot to the Olympics. The Men’s Intercontinental Olympic Qualification Tournament was held from August 9th to August 11th 2019.
Pool A was held in Varna, Bulgaria. The first two matches saw both Brazil and Bulgaria defeat Egypt (3-0 and 3-1 respectively) and Puerto Rico (3-0 and 3-0 respectively), setting up a winner take all match on the final day. Bulgaria won the first two sets, but Brazil was able to survive the third set, winning it 32-30. The nation then won the fourth set to push the match to its limit. The fifth and deciding set and Olympic qualifier was won by Brazil. Egypt finished third by defeating Puerto Rico in straight sets.
Pool B was held in Rotterdam, Netherlands. After suffering a scare against South Korea where the host nation needed all five set to win, Netherlands proceeded to defeat Belgium 3-0. The United States was also undefeated after two matches with 3-1 and 3-0 victories against Belgium and South Korea respectively. In the deciding match, the United States defeated the Netherlands 3-1. Third place was won by Belgium who defeated South Korea 3-0.
Pool C was held in Bari, Italy. Despite putting up a fight against Serbia and Italy, Australia lost both of those matches 3-1 and 3-2 respectively. Serbia and Italy also defeated Cameroon in straight sets. The deciding match between the two European nations was won by Italy as they defeated Serbia 3-0. Australia finished in third place thanks to a straight sets victory over Cameroon.
Pool D was held in Gdansk, Poland. The top two seeds of this pool met on the second day with Poland defeating France 3-0 allowing the nation to have two victories as they defeated Tunisia 3-0 on the first day. Similarly, France had already defeated Slovenia 3-0 on the first day, almost assuring Poland an Olympic quota. Poland sealed its spot to the Olympics thanks to a 3-1 victory over Slovenia. France finished second thanks to a 3-1 victory over Tunisia who finished last in the group.
Pool E was held in St. Petersburg, Russia. Despite losing to Cuba 2-0, Iran was able to recover and win the match 3-2. Iran then won their second match against Mexico 3-0 to set up a winner takes all match against Russia who was also undefeated after their first two matches. Russia won the match and qualified to the Olympics by defeating Iran 3-0. Third place was won by Cuba as they defeated Mexico 3-0.
Pool F was held in Ningbo, China. The two top seeds of this pool met in the first round where Argentina caused a minor seeding upset by defeating Canada 3-1. Argentina maintained its perfect record by defeating Finland and China 3-1 and 3-2 respectively to qualify to the Olympics. Canada finished second as they defeated China and Finland 3-2 and 3-1 respectively while China finished in third thanks to a 3-1 victory over Finland.
Unqualified nations will have one more opportunity to qualify to the Olympics at their respective continental qualifiers to be held in 2020.