Tibor Benedek, one of Hungary’s best players of all time and a former head coach of the national team, won’t work in water polo anymore.
The three-time Olympic champion, who was UVSE’s head coach from 2018 until the start of May, announced that he had withdrawn from all activities in water polo.
Tibor Benedek said in the official statement:
As of May 1, I will retire from all water polo-related activities and in the following years, I will only participate as a fan in the life of Hungarian water polo and in the further professional work of UVSE.
I would like to thank you for the three and a half years spent in the club, during which I received a lot of love, support, and trust from the leaders of the club, especially from president Peter Lovas and my colleagues.
Special thanks to all the young athletes I was able to teach. I loved being a Master (coach), I got almost the same joy from him as a player and I am proud of the team I worked with for a season and a half. Overall, I can say that as both a Federal Captain and a Youth Coach, I got everything I could, unfortunately, I couldn’t win everything, but I don’t want to look insatiable.
I do not wish to make any statement other than this announcement, the reason for my decision is purely private.
I am delighted to be replaced by a great professional to whom I will hand over the management of the senior team for the remaining months with a calm heart, and whose identity we will soon inform our water polo friends.
Benedek played water polo in Ujpest Dosza, Racing Roma, Pro Recco, Honved, and in Sliema (in the summer Maltese league).
He is one of a few players in water polo history who won three Olympic gold medals (2000, 2004, 2008). Playing for Hungary he clinched the gold medal at the 2003 World Championships, the European title in 1997, gold medals in the World League (2003, 2004) and the FINA World Cup (1995) and a lot of silver and bronze medals at the major competitions.
He was named the Hungarian Water Polo of the Year in 1992, 1993 and 1994.
Benedek has five titles in the Champions League in his treasury (with Ujpest Dosza in 1994, and in 2007, 2008, 2010, 2012 with Pro Recco), six titles of national champion of Hungary, seven titles in the Italian Serie A1…
He retired from the national team in 2008, while he stopped playing water polo in 2012. Benedek finished the career as Pro Recco’s player.
From 2013 to 2016, Benedek was the head coach of Hungary (in the period 2010-2012, he was an assistant coach in Hungary’s staff led by Denes Kemeny).
Benedek’s biggest success in the coaching job was the gold medal at the 2013 World Championships in Barcelona. That was Hungary’s first gold at the Worlds after ten years.
From 2018 to 2020 he was UVSE’s head coach.