Wilfredo Leon

A Polish-Cuban volleyball player.

Wilfredo Leon
Wilfredo Leon Source: Google

Volleyball player Wilfredo Leon Venero is of Cuban and Polish descent. He currently plays for Sir Safety Perugia and the Polish national team.

From 2007 to 2012, he was a member of the Cuban national team. One of the top volleyball players in the world is Wilfredo Leon.

About Wilfredo Leon |  Family and Education

On July 31, 1993, Leon Venero was born in Santiago de Cuba, Cuba. He is the son of Alina Vanero Boza and Wilfredo Leon Hechavarria. Alina, his mother, used to play volleyball.

Leon received his studies at the National Cuban Volleyball School in Cuba.

Leo’s parents enrolled him in a recreation program when he was a young child to prevent him from playing and exploring the streets of Santiago de Cuba.

In the program, he just so happened to play volleyball, which was ideal for him. Leon was already playing for the junior national team and represented the group abroad at the age of eleven.

Leon was already 6 feet 4 inches tall when he turned fourteen, so the coaches trained him with the senior team.

How come Wilfredo left Cuba?

Wilfredo is one of several Cuban volleyball players who have left their country in search of greater prospects in a professional career that may at least cover the necessities of life.

He desired to be a part of a team that offered enough resources for him to practice well without having to worry about things like leaking dormitory roofs.

Additionally, he needs a group that could offer consistent running water and appropriate medical care in case of injuries.

Wilfredo claims that eight out of ten players who were previously as excellent as him quit the Cuban youth national team due to carelessness and subpar treatment.

But as the junior national team traveled to Mexico to compete in a competition, Leon was confronted with reality.

He noticed upscale eateries and shops, as well as delicious cuisine and stylish clothing.

Leo thought that for all the effort he had put in over that time, he should be rewarded with a better life.

The talented athletes who may someday form a formidable Cuban National Team are dispersed all over the world in this fashion.

Yandy Leal, who currently represents Brazil, Osmany Juantorena, and Angel Dennis, who play for Italy, are a few of them.

Polish New Life

A Polish journalist interviewed Wilfredo Leon in 2011. Leon had a chance to speak with the same reporter a few more times throughout the online interview.

At the World League competition in northern Poland, Leon, at last, had a face-to-face encounter with the reporter.

Malgorzata Leon was the reporter’s name. During the tournament, Wilfredo and Malgorzata had the chance to spend four days together, and they grew closer than before.

Wilfredo’s career also took a turn after the 2012 World League Tournament, when he assisted Malgorzata’s ailing side. Leon was instrumental in the team’s bronze-medal victory.

In 2013, Wilfredo informed Cuban authorities that he intended to leave the national team and requested authorization to leave the country.

Leon finally received approval from the government in 2014. When Wilfredo Leon emigrated from Cuba in 2014, he received numerous citizenship offers and a sizable sum of money.

However, Malgorzata Leon, who is now his wife and the mother of his children, was a Polis girlfriend when Leon made his decision to move to Poland.

Instead of using the chance as a business plan, he placed more importance on his personal life.

Professional Life and Career

Leon’s mother, Alina Venero, served as his first coach when he was just seven years old.

On May 24, 2008, he made his national team debut for Cuba in Dusseldorf at the age of 14.

Wilfredo won the 2009 World League award for Best Receiver. He also won the silver medal at the 2009 World U21 Championship on July 31, 2009.

In 2009, the Cuban national team, which Leon was a part of, won three individual accolades as well as NORCECA Champion.

In the 2010 World Championship match against Brazil, Cuba took home the silver medal.

Wilfredo quickly became the youngest captain of the Cuban national team when he was only seventeen years old. Leon won the bronze medal in the World League-Sofia in 2012.

Leon left Cuba in 2014 and then signed with the Russian team Zenit Kazan. He also won numerous national league, cup, and CEV Champions League titles.

In 2015 and 2016, Wilfredo also participated in part-time play for the Qatari club Al Rayyan. He joined the SIR Safety Perugia team in Italy in September 2018.

Leon achieved success in 2019 by winning gold medals at the Coppa Italia and the Supercoppa Italia.

Poland National Team and Wilfredo

Wilfredo Leon qualified to represent Poland’s national squad in 2019. Leon was overjoyed that his adopted home had finally accepted him.

He was given the chance to represent his nation as a Black resident in a place where white people make up the majority of the population.

Now, Wilfredo’s sole objective is to win a gold medal for Poland and establish a lasting legacy in the sport he adores.

After soccer, volleyball is the second most popular sport in Poland, and its popularity is growing rapidly.

At the 2019 Men’s European Volleyball Championship, Poland took home the bronze medal, and Wilfredo was recognized as one of the two greatest outside spikers.

Poland earned silver in the 2019 FIVB Volleyball Men’s World Cup, and Wilfredo was named the sport’s “greatest player in the world.”

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Wilfredo Leon| Style of Playing

Leon has the advantage of being able to use his jump-serve as a weapon.

In the opening Olympic match, his serving had such an impact that it sent the opponents protecting it to the floor.

He lies down for a moment, then quickly launches a flying attack from the side or rear to complete a point.

Leon boasts strong serves and attacks that catch opponents off guard. Wilfredo was the best server, for instance, when he reached 78 miles per hour in one instance during a match versus Canada in the Tokyo Olympics.

Relationship Status

Leon met Malgorzata while he was residing in Poland and fell in love with her.

Malgorzata, with whom he wed on June 24, 2016, gave birth to their daughter Natalia in May 2017.

Being with his wife was one of the key factors in Wilfredo’s decision to leave Cuba.

Net Worth and Salary | Wilfredo Leon

Wilfredo’s net worth is thought to be around $10 million, according to some reports. Additionally, he was reported to have made over $1 million a year when playing for Zenit Kazan.

He is among the volleyball players with the highest salaries. Matches and competitions are the volleyball player’s main sources of revenue.

In contrast, a small amount of the net worth is also increased via investments and brand endorsements.

Body Measurement | Hair, Height, Weight

Leo is the sign of the lion, and Leon is currently 29 years old.

Leon, who is 6 feet 8 inches tall, appears to have knees that are at the same level as the bottom of the net. He keeps a 96 kg athletic body in good shape.

To talk about physical appearance, Wilfredo also has an oval face, dark brown eyes, and black afro-style hair.

Social Media

On social media sites like Twitter and Instagram, Leon is active.

Sadly, Wilfredo is not very active on Twitter. However, he frequently posts photos of his family, friends, and noteworthy occasions on Instagram.

Wilfredo has more than 244k followers on Instagram.

Frequently Asked Question:

How many different languages does Wilfredo Leon know?

Wilfredo is fluent in English, Polish, Spanish, Italian, and Russian. He was born in Cuba, then relocated to Poland, played for Russian and Italian teams, and is fluent in all of these languages.

How quickly does Wilfredo Leon serve?

At 138 km/h, Leon now owns the world record for serve speed.

Quick Facts | Wilfredo Leon

Full Name Wilfredo Leon Venero
Common Name Wilfredo Leon
Date of Birth July 31, 1993
Place of Birth Santiago de Cuba, Cuba
Nickname Leo
Religion Christianity
Nationality Cuban and Polish
Ethnicity Black
Father’s Name Wilfredo Leon Hechavarria
Mother’s Name Alina Vanero Boza
Siblings Unknown
High School Escuela Nacional del Voleibol Cubano
University Unknown
Zodiac Sign Leo
Age 29 Years Old
Height 6 feet 8 inches (202 cm)
Weight 96 kg (212 lb)
Eye Color Dark Brown
Hair Color Black
Build Athletic
Body Measurement Unknown
Marital Status Married in 2016
Girlfriend Malgorzata Gronkowska Leon
Children Daughter Natalia (born in 2017)
Residence Poland
Profession Professional Volleyball player
Position Outside Hitter, Wing Spiker
Affiliations Sir Safety Perugia
National Team
  • Cuba (2007-2012)
  • Poland (2019-present)
Idol When Growing Up Cuban player Joel Despaigne
Awards and Achievements
  • 2010 World Championship (Silver Medal)
  • NORCECA Championship (2009 & 2011)
  • Cuban Championship (2009,2010, 2011)
  • Russian Championship (2015, 2016, 2017, 2018)
Net Worth $1.5 million
Residence Warsaw, Poland
Endorsements Zamst
Social Handle Instagram, Twitter
Last Update September 2022

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Written by Jeni Watson

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