Serbia and Montenegro recorded wins in derby games on the last day of the group stage at the World U18 Championships in Belgrade and advanced to the quarterfinals.
Host Serbia defeated Italy 16:13 and kept 1st place in Group C.
Montenegro beat Spain 11:8 to finish atop Group D
The Serbs and the Montenegrins joined Hungary and Greece in the quarterfinals. Those two teams secured top spots in their respective groups yesterday.
Besides the matches that were decisive for top spots in Group C and D, a few crucial games were on today’s program.
The Netherlands, which plays at the Men’s U18 Worlds for the first time, defeated Australia 14:10 and finished 2nd in Group B. Thanks to this win, the Dutch will have a much easier task in the cross-over round than Australia. The Netherlands will face Kazakhstan, while Australia will meet Croatia.
Day 5, results
Group A: Croatia – Uzbekistan 21:6, Kuwait – Hungary 2:27.
Group B: Australia – Netherlands 10:14, Turkey – Greece 6:18
Group C: New Zealand – USA 5:13, Serbia – Italy 16:13
Group D: Spain – Montenegro 8:11, South Africa – Canada 11:13
Crossover round (tomorrow): Croatia (A2) – Australia (B3) at 16:00, Kazakhstan (A3) – Netherlands (B2) at 17:30, Italy (C2) – Canada (D3) at 19:00, USA (C3) – Spain (D1) at 20:30,. Full schedule is at the end of the article.
Croatia – Uzbekistan 21:6 (7:2, 5:0, 6:3, 3:1)
Croatia: Cubranic, Burdjelez 1, Dodoja 1, Stojanac 3, Cicero 2, Bakaric 1, Mozara 1, Radan 3, Pavlic 2, Kolak 1, Jankovic 3, Mihaljevic 3, Cosic. Head coach: Koljanin.
Uzbekistan: Sattarov, Yumangulov, Vishyakov 1, Dashov, Nasyrdinov, Rustamov 1, Safyddinov, Dilumorodov, Turgunov 1, Krivoxijin 3, Rakhimov, Yusufjanov, Sayfullaev. Head coach: Nechaev.
Kuwait – Hungary 2:27 (0:5, 1:8, 1:8, 0:6)
Kuwait: Baqer, Alzaid, Mubarak, Altheyab, Buftain, Aldusari 1, Alhusaini, Alkhadhr, Alzaid, Alshammari, Alrayyes, Alkandari 1, Almatar. Head coach: Markoglou.
Hungary: Gyapjas, Szepfalvi 2, Nagy 4, Balogh 5, Gaszt 5, Biros 1, Ionescu 1, Leinweber 4, Bede 2, Varga 1, Szecsi 1, Szalai 1, Csite. Head coach: Kovacs-Csatlos.
Croatia did what it had to do – beat Kazakhstan convincingly and confirmed 2nd place in the group. Uzbekistan leveled just once (1:1). Croatia built a 5-goal lead by the end of the first period. It doubled an advantage in the second period and played at full speed almost until the end.
The second match of the day in this group was training for Hungary, but it was useful for Kuwait. The Arabs could learn something from one of the powerhouses. Of course, Hungary recorded an easy win. All field players got on the scoresheet. Balogh and Gaszt led the attack with five goals each.
1.Hungary 4- 8
2.Croatia 4 – 6
3. Kazakhstan 4 – 4
4. Uzbekistan 4 – 2
5. Kuwait 4 – 0
Australia – Netherlands 10:14 (3:5, 3:5, 1:1, 3:3)
Australa: Dweyer, Miller 1, Bruce, McKell, Tucker, Dart 2, Valentine 2, McKenzie 1, Fodor 1, Goldschmit 1, Burdack 2, Rathbone, Purcell. Head coach: Fox.
Netherlands: Stevens, Bakker, Wijgers 2, Van de Bovenkamp, Wouters 1, Harreman, Ten Broek 4, Voorvelt 2, Groenendijk 2, Snel 2, Reijchard, Van de Dobbelsteen 1, Steenbrink. Head coach: Mitrovic.
Turkey – Greece 6:18 (0:5, 2:3, 3:4, 1:6)
Turkey: Tugrul, Akinci, Ercikdi, Cetin, Kuloglu, Karabenli, Erkoyar, Emir, Ali Yener 2, Caferli 2, Sarac 1, Caner, Zobu. Head coach: Batmaz.
Greece: Damigos, Defteraios, Nikolaidis, Salech 1, Almyras 3, Ksatrinakis 2, Ch.Bitsakos 3, A. Bitsakos 1, Myrilos, Mathipoulos 5, Spachtis 1, Kandenoleon 2, Partsoglou. Head coach: Machairas.
Australia scored an opener, but the Dutch responded with three goals for a 3:1 lead. The “Sharks” leveled at 3:3. However, the Netherlands secured a 2-goal advantage with two goals in the last 90 seconds of the first. In the middle of the second quarter, Lars Josh Ten Broek scored for 7:3, and it was more-or-less clear who would win. Early in the third period, the Netherlands increased their lead to five goals (11:6), but Australia didn’t surrender. The “Sharks” tightened their defense and kept the Dutch goalless for ten minutes. They opened the fourth period with two quick goals and came very close (9:11). However, they couldn’t equalize. Three and a half minutes before the end, Voorvelt ended the Dutch’s goalless phase. Shortly after, Ten Broek added his fourth goal, the Netherlands went to 13:9, and the contest was over.
“We ended the group stage in a good way, and we go on. Our goal at the tournament is to have fun. But, if we have fun and enjoy water polo, we can go high. We have to be calm in our next game against Kazakhstan. I think we can reach a spot among the top eight, at least”, the Netherlands’ goalkeeper Pim Steenbrink said.
Australia’s head coach John Fox commented:
“I am pleased because we have improved since yesretday. We played much better than in the game against Greece on Sunday. We came very close in the fourth quarter. But, our boys lack experience. This is the first international tournament for all of them. The experience was missing for a better result. The boys are still learning.
The duel between Greece and Turkey could change nothing in the standings. Greece secured 1st place yesterday, while Turkey couldn’t move from 5th place. Greece opened the game with a 7:0 lead and never looked back.
1. Greece 4 – 8
2. Netherlands 4 – 6
3. Australia 4 – 4
4. Brazil 4 – 2
5. Turkey 4 – 0
Serbia – Italy 16:13 (5:5, 5:0, 4:3, 2:5)
Serbia: Pajkovic, Maras, Gajic 3, Kojic 2, Gavrilovic 4, Bozovic 4, Urosevic 1, Kovacevic, Brescanski 1, Stanic 1, Bodiroga, Virijevic. Head coach: Stevanovic.
Italy: Giannotti, Provenziani 1, Bragantini 4, Agnolet, Rossi, Gullotta 3, Florena 2, Somma 1, Marini 1, Urbinati, Rocchino, De Simon 1, Valle. head coach: Angelini
New Zealand – USA 5:13 (3:3, 1:1, 1:4, 0:5)
New Zealand: Frost, Soldatovic 1, Morton, Phillips, Keightley, Shivnan, Chapman, Carrington 2, Pickering 1, Johns, Brown, Frazer, Anderson. Head coach: Teokotai-White.
USA: Clansen, Schneider 2, Arakelian 3, Mnatsakanian 1, Verdegaal, Tsotadze, Ausmus, Castillo 2, Dodd 1, Leichty 2, Burghardt 1, Loth, Herzer. Head coach: Sinclair.
A few months ago, Serbia defeated Italy by a goal (9:8) in the semifinals of the Mediterranean Games. This evening, the Serbs killed all suspense before the second half.
The teams traded goals in the opening minutes. The Serbs took a one-goal lead three times, but Italy leveled on each occasion. The “Settebello” had no answer after Serbia went to 4:3. They had a man-up in the seventh minute but didn’t convert it. The Serbs started a counter-attack, which was finished by Viktor Urosevic’s goal. Two goals separated the rivals for the first time – 5:3. Still, at the finish of the quarter, Italy’s Bragantini converted a man-up to half the distance. The same player found the net two seconds before the first break to level at 5:5.
Serbia tightened their defense in the second quarter. The Italians’ defense worked well until the middle of the second period. Kojic made it 6:5 from an extra player. After that, there were no goals for a while. The Serbs started breaking the rival three and a half minutes before the middle break. Zoran Bozovic scored an action goal and the Serbs regained a 2-goal advantage. Shortly after, Gajic scored from a 6 on 5. Bozovicadded one more goal with a nice lob. Four seconds before the end of the second period, Gajic scored from a new power-play opportunity. That 4:0 series in three and a half minutes proved vital for Serbia’s win.
Early in the third, Bozovic added his third goal, and Serbia went to 11:5. The Italians couldn’t come back.
Serbia secured the win, but the Italians fought hard until the end. They had to avoid a big defeat. If they had lost with a 9-goal margin today, they would have been third in the group. Since USA and Italy are equal in points, the results against Serbia decided which team finished 2nd. The Americans lost to Serbia 9:17.
Early in the fourth, Serbia stretched the margin to seven (15:8), and the Italians’ second place was in danger. However, by the middle of the final period, they narrowed the gap to four (11:15), and there was not much excitement in the finish
“Although we won, I am not satisfied with our performance this evening. We made too many mistakes, especially in the first quarter, when we let the Italians score a few easy goals. We consolidated the defense and built a big advantage in the second period. However, after that, we had some oscillations, and players got relaxed at the finish of the match.”, Uros Stevanovic, Serbia’s head coach said.
Italy’s player Antonio Francesco Florena commented:
“We played a good game this evening, but our opponent is probably the best team of the tournament. We did our best, we tried to win, but Serbia was better.”
Team USA didn’t let a surprise happen, but the Americans found it hard to break New Zealand’s resistance. The “Kiwis” were never in front , but they kept up with the favorites for more than two quarters. After a balanced first half, Ben Leichty gave the USA a 5:4 lead in the first possession in the third quarter. But, the close battle continued. In the 20th minute, Mnatsakanian doubled USA’s lead. Pickering answered for 5:6. But, after that, New Zealand ran out of gas, and the USA netted seven unanswered goals for a comfortable 13:5 win.
1.Serbia 3 – 6
2. Italy 3 – 3*
3. USA 3 – 3*
4. New Zealand 3 – 0
*Resulsts against 1st placed team: USA – Serbia 9:17, Italy – Serbia 13:16
Spain – Montenegro 8:11 (3:3, 2:1, 1:3, 2:4)
Spain: Teclas, Villmayor , Gil 2, Patchaliev 1, Frigola 1, Castro 3, Lopez 1, Ibanez, Perez, De La Cruz, Otero, Gomila, Garcia. Head coach: Garcia Plana.
Montenegro: Bjelica, Vuckovic 1, Dragovic, Stupar 2, Krivokapic 1, Vuksic 1, V.Vukicevic, Janovic, L.Vukicevic 1, Bastrica5, Nikaljevic, Hadzic, Vukovic. Head coach: Lompar.
South Africa – Canada 11:13 (1:5, 1:3, 3:4, 6:1)
South Africa: Rajak, Good, Mosehla, Voke, Pryce 5, Van Breda, Botha, Tarr 1, Lomax 4, Saayman, Grimett, Sennett 1, Jacob. Head coach: SIleno.
Canada: Sterne, Mekni 3, Marquez 1, Taylor 2, Hachem 2, O’Neill, Diacenco 1, Evans , Gavric , Oviedo-Ladik 3, Rogers, Malcom-Teleky 1, Mahmoud. Head coach: Szeri.
The U18 teams of Spain and Montenegro faced off for the second time at the major competitions this summer. Montenegro defeated Spain in the semifinals of the Mediterranean Games (10:9), thanks to a late comeback.
Today’s match was similar; everything was decided in the fourth quarter. Montenegro opened the game with a 2:0 lead. However, Spain took control in the middle of the first quarter and produced a 5:1 series to build a 5:3 lead (14th minute).
The Montenegrins leveled at 5:5 early in the third. Immediately after, Frigola put Spain in front (6:5). It turned out that it was the Spaniards’ last lead in the match. Montenegro’s center-forward Nedjo Bastrica equalized (6:6). At the finish of the third quarter, Milos Vuksic scored from a counter-attack for 7:6. Spain’s goalkeeper touched the ball but didn’t save. The ball “walked” into the goal slowly. After the VAR review, it was confirmed that the ball crossed the line, and Montenegro entered the final period with a 7:6 advantage.
Shortly after the last break, Montenegro stretched the margin, scoring three goals in the first three minutes of the quarter. Leftie Danilo Stupar made it 8:6. Centre-forward Nedjo Bastrica added two goals, and Montenegro gained a 10:5 lead. Spain couldn’t come back after that 0:5 series.
Bastrica led Montenegro’s attack with five goals, while goalkeeper Andrija Bijelica did a good job in defense. He posted nine saves and received an MVP of the match award.
“Spain is a very difficult opponent. We have played against them several times, and we always had hard maches. I think that our mentality and a big wish led us to the victory. We were calm in crucial moments:”, Bjelica said.
Canada finished 3rd in the group collecting three points against South Africa. The North Americans earned a big lead in time, so South Africa couldn’t catch up with the rival, although it dominated in the final minutes.
The Canadians rushed to a 5:0 lead. South Africa got on the scoreboard just 20 seconds before the first break. Canada ruled the field until the middle of the third quarter and a 10:3 lead. Then, the rivals changed their roles. South Africa became the team that dominated. Two minutes and a half before the final buzzer, the Africans reduced the gap to two goals (11:13). There was still enough time for a big turn. But South Africa didn’t go further. Canada kept a 2-goal advantage and 3rd place in the group.
1.Montenegro 3 – 6
2. Spain 3 – 4
3. Canada 3 – 2
4. South Africa 3 – 0
Game 3: Croatia (A2) – Australia (B3) at 16:00
Game 4: Kazakhstan (A3) – Netherlands (B2) at 17:30
Game 1 : Italy (C2) – Canada (D3) at 19:00.
Game 2: USA (C3) – Spain (D1) at 20:30
Classification matches: Uzbekistan – Turkey (12:00), Kuwait – Brazil (13:30)
Hungary (A1) – winner game 1 (QF1) at 16:30
Greece (B1) – winner game 2 (QF2) at 18:00
Serbia (C1) – winner game 3 (QF3) at 19:30
Montenegro (D1) – winner game 4 (QF4) at 21:00