Hungary and Australia will meet in the final game of the 16th FINA Men’s World Cup in Berlin, Today’s semifinals were thrilling battles. Hungary defeated Serbia, the 2014 World Cup winner. A penalty shootout decided the winner in the second semifinal. Australia was better than Germany, which already made a big achievement and a surprise by securing a spot among the top 4 teams.
Semifinals 1 – 4
An encounter between two powerhouses, which came to Berlin with rejuvenated squads, saw a lot of twists and turns. Serbia dominated the first ten minutes of the game against Hungary. The Olympic champions built a 5:2 lead by the 11th minute. The Hungarians came back with a 5:1 run. They were 7:6 up in the middle of the third quarter.
Then came a new turn . The Serbs retook the lead in the 28th minute (10:9). Hungary netted three goals in a row to earn a two-goal lead for the first time – 12:10 two minutes and 17 seconds before the final buzzer. Strahinja Rasovic scored for 12:11 with 0:39 seconds on the clock. The Hungarians didn‘t find the net in the next possession and the Serbs had 10 seconds to secure a penalty shootout. Dejan Savic asked for time out and prepared unusual action, using one of the most interesting experimental rules. Serbia’s goalkeeper Dimitrije Risticevic left his goal and joined the teammates in the attack. Risticevic, the eldest one in this Serbian team (26 years), attempted to score an equalizer, but he missed and Hungary celebrated a 12:11 win.
The top scorer in the team of Hungary was Bence Batori with 3 goals, while Gavril Subotic scored 3 for Serbia. The Hungarians did a fine job, by stopping Serbian captain Dusan Mandic, who netted just one goal (from 8 attempts).
Australia and Germany fought in a very close battle, just like two days ago, when Australia defeated Germany in the group stage (10:9). The Germans were never in front, but they never were more than a goal behind the rival. Aaron Younger in Australia and Maurice Juengling in Germany boosted their teams with 3 goals each.
After the 32nd minute, the score was 8:8. There were a lot of misses and a few saves in the penalty shootout, only 5 goals were scored, but the Australians were more concentrated and went through (11:10). This was a historic win for the “Aussie Sharks”, as they will play in the final game of the World Cup for the first time. Before the competition in Berlin, they had only one bronze (1993).
Semifinals 5 – 8
The USA and Croatia will meet in the game for the 5th place.
As expected, Croatia easily beat South Africa (16:3), while the USA defeated Japan in a very exciting duel. The USA led for most of the time, while the Japanese went in front twice (5:4 in the 2nd and 6:5 in the 3rd period), but until the middle of the last quarter, the gap between two sides was never bigger than a goal. Bowen, the best player of the game, scored his 5th goal for an 11:9 lead (03:20 on the clock). Seiya Adachi converted a penalty for 11:10 (his 4th goal today) 18 seconds later. In the remaining time, both teams had nice chances, but there were no goals and the Americans posted a minimal 11:10 win.
FINA World Cup 2018, Berlin, Day 5
Hungary 12:11 Serbia
(1:3, 5:3, 3:3, 3:2)
Hungary: Batori 3, Zalnaki 2, S. Jansik 2, Kovacs 2, Pasztor 2, Mezei
Serbia: Subotic 3, S. Rasovic 2, V. Rasovic 2, Mandic, Randjelovic, Jaksic, Drasovic.
Australia 11:10 Germany
(3:2, 1:2, 3:3, 1:1, 3:2)
Australia: Younger 3, Kayes, Power, Hollis, Ford, Edwards.
Germany: Juengling 3, Real 2, Restovic 2, Stamm.
Penalty shootout – Australia: Cambell, Edwards, Ford. Germany: Reibel, Stamm.
Semifinals 5 – 8
Croatia 16:3 South Africa
(5:2, 4:0, 2:1, 5:0)
Croatia: Basic 4, Loncar 3, Milos 3, Setka 2, Macan, Fatovic, Benic, Vukicevic.
South Africa: Spencer 2, Rabie.
USA 11:10 Japan
(3:2, 2:3, 4:3, 2:2)
USA: Bowen 5, Hooper 2, Cupido 2, Hallock, Stevenson-
Japan: Adachi 4, Okawa 3, Araki 2,Takata.
Sunday (16 September)
For 7th place: Japan – South Africa.
For 5th place: Croatia – USA
For 3th place: Serbia – Germany
Final: Hungary – Australia.