Australia Water Polo

No surprises at start of Women’s Water Polo World Championship

Italy-Canada, Women's World Championships
Photo: facebook.com/waterpolocanada

The Women’s Water Polo Tournament at the 17th FINA World Championships in Budapest started on July 16. Day One saw no surprises in the first eight matches of the group stage. Italy, China, Spain, the USA, Netherlands, Hungary, Australia and Russia collected 2 points each.

The first match of the day was also the most exciting one. It was the clash in Group A between Italy, the silver winner in Rio 2016 and the bronze winner in Kazan 2015, and Canada, which finished 2nd at 2017 World League Super Final. Canada opened the match better and had a one-goal lead after the first quarter (1:2). Fabio Conti’s squad woke up and left its opponent scoreless in the next two quarters. Eight minutes before the end of the game, Italian water polo players were up by four (6:2). Canada had no solution and failed to make a comeback. Due to an excellent performance, Italy increased the advantage to six and managed to record the first win in Budapest (10:4).

In the second match of the day, China overpowered Brazil (4:11) leaving it scoreless in the second and the fourth period. Even though Brazil had 2:0 at the start of the game, China stepped up the game. It overcame this deficit and gained the lead. Brazil was no longer able to jeopardize the advantage of China water polo team, which finished 7th at the 2016 OI in Rio and 6th at the 2017 World League Super Final.

The reigning world champion started the competition with a complete dominance over the water polo team of South Africa (2:24). Team USA totally crushed their rival which only netted two goals in the third quarter. Brilliant Jamie Neushul was the top scorer of the day with six goals, whereas Melissa Seidemann found the net five times.

The hosting team made no mistake against Japan. It scored twelve goals in the first half (4:12), eight of which in the second period. Hungary went on a break with an eight-goal lead which it increased to eleven before the final quarter (6-17). Japan won the last period only to bring down the deficit to nine (11-20).

Spanish squad easily defeated New Zealand (2:8), while French water polo players were completely helpless against Netherlands (17:2). The Aussie Stingers triumphed over Kazakhstan with no trouble (16:4), led by Webster who scored five.

The last game on July 16 saw Russia come away with a nice victory over Greece (). Russia had a two-goal lead at halftime (6:4), but Greece water polo players were determined and didn’t give up. They were falling behind only by one before the final eight minutes (8:7). However, Russia’s defense was on point and prevented Greece from turning over the result.

17th FINA World Championships – Women’s Water Polo Tournament
Day 1 Results (July 16)

Group A

Italy vs. Canada 10:4 (1:2, 2:0, 3:0, 4:2)
Italy: Garibotti (1), Queriolo (2), Aiello (1), Bianconi (2), Emmolo (1), Cotti (2), Picozzi (1)
Canada: Wright (1), Eggens (2), McKee (1)

Brazil vs. China 4:11 (2:4, 0:2, 2:1, 0:4)
Brazil: Zablith (1), Cardos (1), Dias (1), Duarte (1)
China: Niu (1), C. Zhang (3), Z. Zhang (2), Nong (1), D. Zhang (1), Chen (2), J. Zhong (1)

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

Group B

New Zealand vs. Spain 2:8 (0:3, 1:1, 0:2, 1:2)
New Zealand: Mason (1), Lopes da Silva (1)
Spain: A. Espar (2), Gomez (2), P. Rovirosa (3), Forca (1), Barriga (1), A. Rovirosa (1)

South Africa vs. USA 2:24 (0:6, 0:7, 2:5, 0:6)
South Africa: Schooling 1, Barret 1
USA: Seidemann (5), Fattal (3), K. Neushul (3), J. Neushul (6), M. Fischer (2), Williams (1), Hauschild (2), A. Fischer (2)

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

Group C

Japan vs. Hungary 11:20 (1:4, 3:8, 2:5, 5:3)
Japan: Yamamoto (4), Inaba (2), Arima (4), Kazama (1)
Hungary: Czigány (1), Keszthelyi (4), Tóth (4), Bujka (5), Szilágyi (2), Antal (2), Gurisatti (2)

Netherlands vs. France 17:2 (7:0, 5:0, 3:1, 2:1)
Netherlands: Smit (1), D. Genee (3), van der Sloot (3), A. Genee (1), Sevenich (1), Megens (3), Klaassen (4), Joustra (1)
France: Millot (1), Mahieu (1)

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

Group D

Australia vs. Kazakhstan 16:4 (4:1, 4:1, 4:2, 4:0)
Australia: Gofers (2), Buckling (1), Bishop (2), Ridge (1), Webster (5), Arancini (3), Steere (2)
Kazakhstan: Akilbayera (1), Murshina (1), Zakirova (2)

Russia vs. Greece 9:7 (2:1, 4:3, 2:3, 1:0)
Russia: Karimova (3), Simanovich (3), Ivanova (1), Borisova (1), Timofeeva (1)
Greece: Diamanthopoulou (2), Asimaki (2), E. Plevritou (1), Xenaki (2)

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

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