The double gender age group event is the only age-group world championships on the 2018-2019 FIVB international schedule and it will be an opportunity for the best players in their class to pick up valuable experience on the way to a career in senior competition.
Thirty-two teams per gender (and 24 teams per gender in the qualification round) will compete in the main draw for the crown of U21 world champions and earn wild card access to a World Tour event.
The qualification system will ensure the universality of the tournament as teams from all five volleyball confederations will take part.
In the main draw five teams per gender per continental confederation will take part. In qualification there will be four teams per gender per continental confederation, and as reserve there will be four teams per gender per continental confederation. The two host nation teams per gender in the Main Draw will not count towards the continental quota.
Historically, many of the young stars of today have built up their experience at the age-group FIVB World Championships before advancing up the ladder in international competition to the FIVB Beach Volleyball World Tour.
Brazil’s Bruno Schmidt won gold at the Rio de Janeiro Olympic Games 10 years on from winning U21 gold, the same year that 2015 world champion Barbara Seixas also topped the U21 podium.
The 2017 edition was held in Nanjing, China. The women's competition in 2017 featured gold medals for Brazil’s Eduarda 'Duda' Santos Lisboa and Ana Patricia Silva Ramos, silver for Russia’s Nadezda Makroguzova and Svetlana Kholomina, and bronze for USA’s Milina Mirkovic and Kathryn Plummer.
In the men's competition, another Brazilian team topped the podium in the shape of Ardielson Dos Santos Silva and Renato Andrew Lima de Carvalho. Silver went to Russia’s Aleksandr Kramarenko and Vasilii Ivanov, while Latvia’s Kristaps Smits and Mihails Samoilovs won bronze.