The indoor volleyball World Championships trophies were stolen while on a tour in a mall parking lot in Rio de Janeiro, according to the FIVB.
The trophies were previously on display at a fan promotional event on Copacabana Beach, according to The Associated Press.
The FIVB Men’s World Championship is Aug. 30-Sept. 21 in Poland. The Women’s World Championship is Sept. 23-Oct. 12 in Italy.
The FIVB hoped to have the trophies present for the Opening Ceremony and first men’s match in Poland next Saturday. Now, it won’t wait to see if the trophies can be found. It has contacted the Swiss company that made the original trophies for replacements.
“This situation is lamentable as the FIVB worked very hard to create a unique trophy for both World Championships,” FIVB President Dr. Ary S. Graçasaid in a press release. “The FIVB will work with the local authorities to attempt to recover these iconic pieces of silverware, but in the meantime will act quickly to create new ones so that a trophy will be guaranteed to be present at both finals of the World Champs.”
Brazil is known as a soccer nation, but it is excellent in both beach and indoor volleyball as well. Brazil’s men won the last three indoor World titles, while the women were runners-up to Russia in the last two.
“Contrary to the World Cup trophy, which is worth a lot because it is made of gold, the volleyball trophies don’t have any market value. No one will profit from their sale,” Brazilian confederation superintendent Neuri Barbieri told the AP.
No. 1 Iga Swiatek of Poland is favored to claim a third French Open title, a year after beating American Coco Gauff in the final. She bids to join Serena Williams and Justine Henin as the lone women to win the French Open three or more times since 2000.
Two Americans are ranked in the top six in the world — No. 3 Jessica Pegula and Gauff.
The last American to win a major singles title was Sofia Kenin at the 2020 Australian Open. The 11-major drought matches the longest in history (since 1877) for American men and women combined.
But the No. 1 seed is Spaniard Carlos Alcaraz, who won last year’s U.S. Open to become, at 19, the youngest man to win a major since Nadal’s first French Open title in 2005.
Now Alcaraz looks to become the second-youngest man to win at Roland Garros since 1989, after Nadal of course.
Alcaraz missed the Australian Open in January due to a right leg injury, but since went 30-3 with four titles. Notably, he has not faced Djokovic this year. They could meet in the semifinals.
Russian Daniil Medvedev, the No. 2 seed, was upset in the first round by 172nd-ranked Brazilian qualifier Thiago Seyboth Wild. It marked the first time a men’s top-two seed lost in the first round of any major since 2003 Wimbledon (Ivo Karlovic d. Lleyton Hewitt).
No. 9 Taylor Fritz, No. 12 Frances Tiafoe and No. 16 Tommy Paul are the highest-seeded Americans, all looking to become the first U.S. man to make the French Open quarterfinals since Andre Agassi in 2003. Since then, five different American men combined to make the fourth round on eight occasions.