Seeing that Volleyball in Iran has reached to the current peak and stands among titans of the world brings pride to any Iranian inside and outside of the country. Especially for those who have tolerated hard work for progress of it. This glory is not work of one person. It is not fruit of one or two years work. It goes back to a century ago. Thanks and sincere appreciation to all of those who have worked for it. Those who are in Iran or who are living outside the country. Even who are not alive but their remembrance and memory is with us. So for getting more familiarity I had to go to the past of volleyball and in this report I have tried to give some detailed information according the evidence which I had reached them in the reports and recorded documents. In some sectors data were weak such as biography and photos of the persons and teams. For getting familiarity with super league I thought it is necessary to give detailed information regarding history of volleyball in Iran. So the report will come in different parts.
A brief history of volleyball in Iran
Around year 1920 Mr. Mir Mahdi VARZANDEH- the great sport master, brought volleyball to Iran. The teaching started from Dar al Mooalemin Varzesh(center of sport teachers). At the beginning Playing volleyball did not have any special rules. It was played in different forms.
Control committee members for the 5th Boys’ Youth world Volleyball championship of Tehran
1997 unfortunately at the moment 3 gentlemen of the photo has passed away
As rules volleyball and its techniques and tactics were not based on a foundation. Every player by his personal initiative and exclusive was playing it. Play was based on hitting and punching the ball the ball by fist.
The rules which were used in other countries were printed in some magazines .In 1923 they were translated into Persian, by translations volleyball adopted those rules and fixed them in the play.
By passing the time some attempts were done in planed order for improving volleyball. In 1954 Mr. Ziya Aldin SHADMAN, the president of volleyball and basketball federation translated a Book with named “The Rules of volleyball”. The translated book was compiled by Mr. Kazem RAHBARI- distinguished volleyball Referee, and chief of the physical education office for schools. In organizing volleyball tournaments this book was a very useful guide.
At the beginning of establishing the sport federations, Volleyball and basketball had a joint federation; in 1957 volleyball got a separate federation. Mr. Amir ABBAS AMIN was nominated as the first president of volleyball federation. In 1959 Iran became affiliated member of FIVB. In those era volleyball competitions were played under the name of club championship, free teams, selective teams, champions of schools and colleges in cities were formed, lastly the country’s championship was taking place.
During the World War II there was invasion of Iran by the allies’ forces (http://atlas.usv.ro/www/codru_net/CC16/2/iran.pdf). Sportive connection of Iran volleyball with soldiers of these troops was formed. At that time a volleyball match between Iran team with Army team of Russia in Bandar-e Anzali(Anzali Port) a harbor town on theCaspian Sea took place (NB Bandar-e Anzali is very close toRasht– it is one of the most important seaports in the north of Iran). The match came to end for benefit of Iran team.
Players of the Iran team were SAHMLOO, HAKOUPIAN, CHARLI, Ahmadi Nia, Shadman, Bozorgmehr and Khatam.
Volleyball players privately or in shape of sport had trips outside. Watching volleyball matches had great effect upon Iran Volleyball. Spikes by jump over one feet were more acceptable than spike by jump over both feet .These changes from 1952 were completely tangible. High sets in shape of dome were imitative of MOHAMMAD HASSAN ASHTARI.
In 1957 Volleyball got independent federation. Amir Abbbas AMIN as the first president started his service. In that time joining of Fédeéation was purposed al last one year later. In 1959 Iran became member of Federation Internationalé de Volleyball (FIVB). In 1958 for the first time volleyball national team of Pakistan was invited to Iran for having several friendly matches with national team, club teams and Army team. For the first time the national volleyball team was formed.
At that time the dimensions of playing ground was 20 X 10, in each part 9-11 players were standing, who were playing with ball by head and hands. There was not rotation of players; everybody who had more specialties was playing as a fixed player in that post. From 1925 enthusiast paid more attention to this field. In a very short time a lot of admirers were attracted to this field. Train and practice of volleyball seriously was started continuously in 3 places: 1- Dar al Moaalemin varzesh 2- club of Shayesteh or Ejtemaeyoon 3-club of Alborz College.
The last place had more facilities and many courts. A lot of youngsters were practicing volleyball there. In 1925 after some months of training the first mutual match between two teams of Dar al Moalemin and club of Shayesteh took place, since the match had newness for the public, their presence created a lot of enthusiast during the match.
Sometimes latter the National team with 8 players participated in the Third Asian Game of Tokyo in 1958. Feridon SHARIFZADEH was head coach of the team. He was one of the high sport’s persons in that period. He formerly had record of playing in European teams. It was the first time Iran team was participating in such an important event.
The team by doing perfect performance achieved the second place with pride and came back home with silver medal. Gradually volleyball got way into the schools and in a short time by graduated sport teachers from Dar al moaalemin varzesh got circulation and popularity in schools. City of Esfahan was the second city after Tehran that was active in promotion of volleyball. The first match of cities was done between college of Esfahan and Alborz college of Tehran; it was the first volleyball match between cities of Iran.
Providing and manufacturing ball for discipline of volleyball was one of the difficulties of that time. Volleyball matches were mostly played by balls of football. At last the first ball of volleyball was made by a person named Gomshie.
After this championship, international activities of Iran volleyball started. coaches and referees were dispatched to International courses, teams from other countries were invited to Iran, national teams participated in international tournaments and championships such as Asian Games, West Asian Games, central Asian games, World championship, world cup, Army championships in the World Military Men’s Volleyball,World University Championships(FISU), TheDeaflympics(previously calledWorld Games for the Deaf andInternational Games for the Deaf),International Paralympic Championship (IPC), international railways sporting association , Republic cups of Turkey, President’s cup of Kazakhsatn, Seikh Rashed cup in UAE and … At those years Mr. Ebrahim Nemati- an International Refree, was a projected figure, then he became member of Referees committee and after that he became refereeing instructor of FIVB (I had the pleasure of co-working with him in Iran volleyball federation. Hereby I give my best regards to him and wish him health, for some years he is sick- he has Alzheimer disease at the moment and he is retired and stays at home).
Volleyball team newly was separated from Basketball and Volleyball federation was directed separately. So federation from the end of decade of 50 was thinking for having foreign coach. Although between work term of this Pakistani coach and his successor there was nearly gap of one decade.
Presence of foreign coaches before
The Asian games of 1958 were going to start. Iran intended to participate in the Asian games with well preparation .A team from Pakistan came to Iran and had 5 friendly preparation matches. In that time Hussein Jabbar Zadegan along with Dr. Shadman Under presidency of Amir Abbas Amin were managing training plans for volleyball players. The Asian Games was a turning point for volleyball so having foreign coaches for progress of structure in this sport was essential.
Sardar Nassorlah Khan
Along with Pakistan team a referee named Sardar Nassorlah Khan came to Iran. This referee had good knowledge in volleyball; he attracted view of Iran authorities. So for achieving the planed goals, they decided to employ him for Iran volleyball. He started work with Iran players before the Asian games of 1958. He gave a plan to the players for spike over the net. On that time Volleyball of India had better progress than the one in Iran. So Pakistan was also considered as a volleyball breeding zone.
In decade of 1970s Iran volleyball had new generation of players. Activities of this generation were more serious than previous years. On the another hand, Sport of Iran was preparing for the Asian Games of Tehran (the Asian Games of Tehran took place in 1974). So, need for foreign coach was felt more than before. For this necessity authorities decided to get use from services of a foreign coach.
Miloslav Ejem from Ex-Czechoslovakia came to Iran (I would like to get use from the present time and express my sincere regards to my dear friend Dr. Ejem, he is well known and beloved guy in volleyball of Iran). Ejem took responsibility of the team which had fame players such as Hassan KORD, Masoud SALEHIEH in its combination. In 1970 Asian Games of Bangkok his team took the fifth rank.
But forwarding steps of volleyball towards good future were clearly obvious. However the progress of sub constructions and educational facilities were not sufficient to cover all round of the country. The wheels of volleyball were rotating in all cities of Iran. By collapse of the East and the separation of Czechoslovakia to Czech and Slovak Dr. Ejem returned to his home land .At the moment he is living in the pretty city of Prague. Also he is still active in the world of volleyball.
Dazzling speed of Mongolian race in volleyball and their unparalleled success in decade of 1970s have rounded eyes of Iranian Volleyball officials. As long as for continuing the track they turned towards the East Asian coaches. Tadaee KORADA from Japan along with Iranian coach Farogh Fakhraldini( he is out of volleyball and now is living in Lavasan city in suburb of Tehran)was sitting on the bench of Iran team in Asian Games of Tehran. Despite of being host Iran team could not get Special points from the Asian volleyball. Team stood at 4th rank among 8 teams. But Korada brought some points with himself for Iran volleyball. Those were beyond the result. He along with Ebrahim Nemati by knowing necessity of performing more games set up a system for the games. Latter those games in shape of a tournament got name of “Pasargad cup”.
Technical changes by him were effective for Iranian coaches. Mehdi Saberpoor till that time was giving function as a spiker. Koroda changed function of Saberpoor to setter. And the system of 1-5, five spikers with one setter was settled in volleyball of Iran. Also thought of performing more preparatory games in Iran was positioned by him.
He is one of the foreigner coaches who came from South Korea to Iran prior the victory of Islamic Republic. In continuation of the volleyball achievements in eastern countries at Asian continent Volleyball federation of Iran decided to get a coach from East of Asia. At that time the speed of Korean play was blinding. So volleyball of Iran with generation of players such as Hassan Kabiri, Mohammad Heydarkhan and Darabiyan came towards Korean coach. The term service of this coach was coincident with rise of nation for the Islamic revolution; it was the beginning of Demonstrations and protests of public, some months latter protests gave fruition and revolution occurred. So Park Song went back to his own country.
End of part 1