Water Polo World Championship

Italy, USA, Netherlands, Hungary and Australia win second straight

USA vs. Spain, Budapest 2017
Photo: rfen.es

The group stage of the Women’s Water Polo Tournament at the 17th FINA World Championships continued on July 18. All teams will play one more group stage match after which group winners will proceed automatically to the quarterfinals.

Italy, the USA, and Australia are currently the only teams with 4 points in their groups. It will be exciting in Group C where both Hungary and Netherlands have 4 points.

Powerful third quarter saves Canada

Victory over China came as encouragement for Canada ladies after the loss to Italy. In the first half, China was on point. But determined Canada just kept coming back causing China to drop the lead on four occasions. Chinese water polo squad went on a break with their hopes high because of a two-goal lead (5:3). The winner was decided after a brilliant third quarter in which Canada netted five unanswered goals. China stroke back in the final period and was so close to equalizing but failed to grasp the opportunity. Canada won (8:9) and collected 2 points to avoid being the last in the group.

Italy is the only team which recorded two wins in Group A. Its defense was on top and Brazil scored only a goal in each quarter (18:4).

First win for Kiwis

The Group B derby was played between the reigning world champion the 2013 world champion. The USA ladies netted crucial six goals in the first period, while its rival scored only once (6:1). Spanish water polo players stepped up their defense in the second quarter which they won and brought down the deficit to four at halftime (7:3). The second half was completely balanced and Spain responded to every goal scored by the USA preventing it to further increase the lead. However, Spain failed to come any closer and recorded its first loss in Budapest. Team USA remained at the top of Group B as the only with two victories.

The clash between two winless teams saw an exciting result see-saw but ended with New Zealand collecting its first win. After a tie after three quarters (4:4), South Africa water polo players stepped up their game. They reached a two-goal advantage, but it seemed as if they took their foot off the gas after that. New Zealand’s offensive followed and it resulted in 8:6 victory.

Supremacy of Netherlands and Hungary

Dutch ladies scored seven unanswered goals in the first period and made it basically impossible for their rival to overcome this difference. In the second quarter, Japan water polo players netted five and brought down the deficit to five showing that they will not surrender easily. However, Netherlands proved too strong in the second half and continued to increase the lead. Led by van der Sloot with 6 goals, Dutch team gave Japan the second defeat at the Tournament (8:20).

The audience saw hosting water polo team record a similar, convincing victory over France (5:24).

Hungary and Netherlands will face each other on July 20 to determine the group winner.

Australia overcomes Russia

After a narrow loss to Russia on Day 1, Greece had an easy job against Kazakhstan. Greece excelled and stormed past winless Kazakhstan (19:5) which was incapable of responding to its rival’s game.

Australia also won its second game in a row since it overcame Russia (8:5). Aussie Stingers were falling behind by one on three occasions in the first half, but it ended in a draw (3:3). Russian water polo team was limited to only a goal in each quarter and they suffered their first loss. Australia won the second straight match due to its indisputable control of the match.

On July 20, Greece will have a chance to replace Australia at the top of the group.

17th FINA World Championships – Women’s Water Polo Tournament
Day 2 Results (July 18)

Group A

China vs. Canada 8:9 (1:1, 4:2, 0:5, 3:1)
China: Xiong (2), Niu (1), C. Zhang (1), D. Zhang (1), Chen (1), J. Zhang (2)
Canada: Wright (2), Eggens (2), McKelvey (2), Robinson (1), Fournier (2)

Italy vs. Brazil 18:4 (5:1, 6:1, 4:1, 3:1)
Italy: Garibotti (1), Queirolo (1), Radicchi (2), R. Aiello (3), Picozzi (1), Bianconi (2), Emmolo (4), Palmieri (4)
Brazil: D. Abla (1), Zablith (2), Duarte (1)

Group A Standings: 1. Italy – 4 points; 2. China – 2; 3. Canada – 2; 4. Brazil – 0

Group B

USA vs. Spain 12:8 (6:1, 1:2, 2:2, 3:3)
USA: Musselman (3), Rachel Fattal (2), Margaret Steffens (1), K. Neushul (3), A. Fischer (1), J. Neushul (1), Alys Williams (1)
Spain: Anna Espar (3), B. Ortiz (1), Lloret (2), Forca (1), Leiton (1)

New Zealand vs. South Africa 8:6 (2:1, 1:2, 1:1, 4:2)
New Zealand: Mason (3), Hudson (3), Pye (2)
South Africa: Penney (1), Schooling (2), Hallendorff (1), Wessels (1), Barrett (1)

Group B Standings: 1. USA – 4 points; 2. Spain – 2; 3. New Zealand – 2; 4. South Africa – 0

Group C

France vs. Hungary 5:24 (0:7, 2:7, 3:6, 0:4)
France: Millot (2), Bachelier (1), Aurore Sacre (1), Adeline Sacre (1)
Hungary: Czigany (2), Antal (4), Gurisatti (1), Szucs (1), Takacs (2), Illes (1), Keszthelyi (4), Toth (2), Bujka (4), Csabai (1), Szilagyi (2)

Japan vs. Netherlands 8:20 (0:7, 5:3, 2:5, 1:5)
Japan: Arima (3), Kazama (1), Magariyama (1), Yamamoto (1), Tokumoto (1), Suzuki (1)
Netherlands: Smit (2), van der Sloot (6), Genee (1), Nijhuis (2), Sevenich (4), Megens (3), Klaassen (2)

Group C Standings: 1. Hungary – 4 points; 2. Netherlands – 4, 3. Japan – 0; 4. France – 0

Group D

Greece vs. Kazakhstan 19:5 (5:0, 4:2, 4:1, 6:2)
Greece: Tsoukala (1), Diamantopoulou (1), Eleftheriadou (3), Avramidou (1), Asimaki (4), Chydirioti (1), Kotsia (1), Manolioudaki (3), Plevritou (3), Xenaki (1)
Kazakhstan: Akilbayeva (3), Myrabekova (1), Mirshina (1)

Australia vs. Russia 8:5 (1:2, 2:1, 3:1, 2:1)
Australia: Gofers (2), Buckling (2), Bishop (1), Amy Ridge (1), Webster (2)
Russia: Karimova (1), Borisova (2), Ivanova (1), Ryzhkova (1)

Group D Standings: 1. Australia – 4 points; 2. Greece -2; 3. Russia – 2; 4. Kazakhstan – 0


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