On the fourth day of the FINA Men’s Water Polo World League Intercontinental Tournament, three more matches of the preliminary play were played at Gold Coast in Australia. On April 28, Australia defeated the USA team in a clash that was considered to be a preview of 1st place game. Japan and Kazakhstan recorded their second win in the Tournament. China still has only one victory collected, whereas New Zealand suffered the fourth loss.
Australia men’s national water polo team currently has 11 points, and it advanced to the top of the table replacing the USA squad which has 9 points. Japan is third with 7 points, while Kazakhstan has 6. China is fifth with 3 points, and winless New Zealand lost all chances for advancing to Super Final.
AUSTRALIA TRIUMPHS AFTER OVERTURNED RESULT
Aussie Sharks emerged as the winner of a clash between two by now unbeaten water polo teams. In spite of the USA squad’s lead, they managed to reverse the result and take over the 1st position in the table from the Americans. Joe Kayes led the Sharks to their fourth consecutive win with his four goals.
The hosting water polo team took the first lead after Gilchrist scored the opener, but the USA was ready to respond and take over the lead thanks to goals netted by Ehrhardt and Daube. Aussie Sharks were also not without a solution for their opponent’s play and the first quarter ended in a draw after Kayes scored (2-2).
At the beginning of the second period, Daube and Obert gave the USA squad a nice two-goal advantage, which was then increased by Hooper to three, keeping the USA’s hopes high. But the hosts stepped up their game and came back powerfully to turn over the result in their favor. Fannon and Gilchrist succeeded to net one each in extra-man situations, and Hollis tied the result. Australia went on a break with a one-goal lead after Power’s goal.
Australia’s game was on the point in the second half as well. The USA managed to bring down the deficit to two on two occasions, but that was all. Unfortunately, Dejan Udovicic’s team was unable to make a comeback by the end of the match.
Gilchrist and Kayes scored again for 8-5 when the USA finally scored after a long time. Molthen decreased the deficit to two and kept the USA still in the game. They remained optimistic about the final period, in which they entered falling behind by three after Kayes netted another goal (9-6).
In the fourth period, Pavillard netted one to give the host an insurmountable four-goal advantage. The USA did not surrender, so De Trane and Vavic again brought their team two goals closer to a draw. However, Australia claimed their supremacy in this match by scoring two more leading them to an important win.
Aussie Sharks will face their last rival in the preliminary play, China, on April 29.
JAPAN TOO STRONG FOR CHINA
Japan water polo players gave an impeccable performance against China, scoring twenty goals in total. At no point did they leave any doubt about who will win the match. After six goals and a four-goal lead in the first quarter, they left their rival scores in the second to wrap up the game early. Brilliant Seiya Adachi netted six goals, whereas Yusuke Shimizu and Kohei Inaba followed with four.
On April 29, Japan will play against Kazakhstan.
KAZAKHSTAN MAKES NO MISTAKE AGAINST NEW ZEALAND
Kazakhstan was a clear favorite in a match against New Zealand water polo team that until now recorded no wins in the Tournament. The Kiwis provided an adequate resistance in the first half which they ended trailing Kazakhstan only by two. In the second half, Kazakhstan stepped up their game and New Zealand had no chance of making any surprise.
In their next game, New Zealand water polo team meets the USA.
FINA Men’s Water Polo World League Intercontinental Tournament
Day 4 Results (April 28)
Kazakhstan vs. New Zealand 15-8 (3-2, 4-3, 6-3, 2-0)
Kazakhstan scorers: Yevgeniy Medvedev (3), Egor Berbelyuk (1), Roman Pilipenko (3), Alexey Shmider (1), Murat Shakenov (1), Yulian Verdesh (1), Altay Altayev (2), Bolat Turlykhanov (1), Ravil Manafov (1), Stanislav Shvedov (1)
New Zealand scorers: Matthew Lewis (1), Matthew Morris (1), Matthew Small (4), Anton Sunde (1), Sean Newcombe (1)
Japan vs. China 20-6 (6-2, 3-0, 4-1, 7-3)
Japan scorers: Seiya Adachi (6), Shuma Kawamoto (2), Yusuke Shimizu (4), Mitsura Takata (1), Atsushi Arai (1), Kohei Inaba (4), Keigo Okawa (1), Kenta Araki (1)
China scorers: Cheng Hao Chu (1), Jia Hao Peng (1), De Ming Li (2), Ze Kai Xie (1), Yi Min Chen (1)
Australia vs. USA 12-8 (2-2, 4-3, 3-1, 3-2)
Australia scorers: Luke Pavillard (1), Joe Kayes (4), Nathan Power (1), Jarrod Gilchrist (3), John Cotterill (1), James Fannon (1), Lachlan Hollis (1)
USA scorers: Hannes Daube (2), Alexander Obert (1), Matthew De Trane (1), Johnathan Hooper (1), Jacob Ehrhardt (1), Ashworth Molthen (1), Marko Vavic (1)