Last week we had a chance to see the general rehearsal for the upcoming World Championship in Budapest, Hungary. This years World League Super Final and the Samartzidis Cup hosted all the top teams and even though top form is still in the making, we had an opportunity to see scrapes of what we can expect in Budapest.
We all got used to seeing the Serbs on top of the podium in last 4 years. Last weekend in Russia they lifted the WL trophy for the 11th time (of 16 editions). Whatever you think about World League competition that number is quite impressive.
Many expected an easier tournament for the Serbs, but the last two games were real thrillers for Savić’s side. The game against the USA in the semifinal and Italy in the finals showed some potential weaknesses. Savić probably didn’t show his trump cards just yet – but it still shows how it isn’t easy to replace Gocić and Nikić. In the next three weeks, he will have a chance to optimize all the details in his tactics.
On the other hand, the Hungarians have won this years Samartizidis Cup. In a very strong tournament, they have beaten Spain, Montenegro, and Canada. Greece was the only team who manage to fight to a draw. This is a big moral boost for the Hungarian team since every Hungarian is expecting them to stop the Serbian domination and become world champions on Margit-sziget. No doubt that they have talent and skills to got the top, but psychological preparation will be a major challenge for Tamás Märcz and his assistants.
We can’t wait to see how everything will play out.