Seems like everything is set for the Aussie Sharks to aim for the podium at the World Championships. After clinching the bronze in the recent World League Super Final they are making last preparations for the upcoming tournament in Gwangju. Nathan dedicated some of his time to talk about the atmosphere in the Australian squad before the big tournament.
Due to the bronze medal in Belgrade, but more importantly, Australia’s outstanding performance during the Super Final, many teams now consider you one of the toughest opponents at the World Championships. How do you see yourself?
We are in a very good place right now as a team. The last few years we have been close to some good results, which we finally achieved in last year’s World Cup and then again this year in the World League. We have great confidence in ourselves and are ready to lift our team to the next level.
What are your thoughts on the teams you will be facing in the group stage?
Croatia is our first game and in my opinion the strongest team at the tournament. This will be a tough game that will set the tone for our two weeks. The USA is a team we share a lot of similarities with and it will be a very physically demanding game. And Kazakhstan we are facing in a game that’s very early in the day, which brings its own set of challenges in making sure we are prepared to perform our best.
In your opinion, who is the biggest favorite for the gold medal?
I think Croatia has to be considered the favorites for the gold medal. Hungary also will be looking to be close to the top after their good showing in the LEN Euro Cup this year.
Is there any specific part of the play you are trying to improve to be fully ready for the World Championships in Gwangju?
We have worked hard this summer on all facets of our game, both physically and tactically.
If the Aussie Sharks keep up this kind of shooting, they will be climbing the podium for sure.