The Netherlands, Hungary, Greece and Australia advanced to the quarterfinals of the World Championships for women, as they defeated their respective opponents in today’s Preliminary Round 2 (crossover matches).
The Netherlands, the European champion, secured the quarterfinals with a slim 5:4 win over Canada. The Dutch scored four of their five goals in the 2nd quarter!
Hungary had no big troubles beating New Zealand (17:6). Greece was better than China (12:8). Australia defeated Kazakhstan (13:3)
In the semifinals for 13th – 16th places, South Africa defeated South Korea (26:3), while Japan didn’t have problems in a match against Cuba (21:9).
Quarterfinals (July 22)
Spain – Netherlands
Semifinals for places 9-12 (July 22): Canada – China, New Zealand – Kazakhstan
18th FINA World Championships, women’s water polo tournament, Day 4
Netherlands – Canada 5:4 (0:0, 4:2, 0:1, 1:1)
Netherlands: Megens 2, Van Der Sloot 1, Wolves 1, Rogge 1.
Canada: E. Wright 2, McKelvey 1, Christmas 1.
New Zealand – Hungary 6:17 (2:4, 1:4, 1:4, 2:5)
New Zealand: McDowall 2, Houghton 2, Howart 1, Doyle 1.
Hungary: Keszthelyi 4, Leimeter 3, Gurisatti 2, Szilagyi 2,Valyi 2, Parkes 1, Rybanska 1, Illes 1, Csabai 1.
Greece – China 12:8 (4:1, 2:2, 4:4, 2:1)
Greece: Plevritou 3, Avramidou 2, Tsoukala 2, Eleftheriadou 1, Asimaki 1, Chydrioti 1, Ninou 1, Xenaki 1.
China: Zhao 4, X. Wang 1, Niu 1, D. Zhang 1, J. Zhang 1.
Kazakhstan – Australia 3:13 (0:4, 1:2, 2:3, 0:4)
Kazakhstan: Myrzabekova 2, Zakirova 1.
Australia: Halligan 4, Arancini 2, Gofers 2, Buckling 1, Webster 1, Ridge 1, Armit 1, Steere 1.
The encounter between the Netherlands and Canada, the first one in the crossover round, offered few goals and a lot of excitements. The Dutch, the European champions, edged out Canada, which took the 4th place at the 2017 World Championships in Budapest – 5:4.
Both defenses and the goalkeepers were superb today, especially in the first quarter. The first goal was scored in the first minute of the second period when a Dutch Iris Wolves hit the back of the net for 1:0. The Netherlands soon doubled an advantage (Maud Megens for 2:0). McKelvey nailed the first goal for Canada (2:1) in the 12th minute. But, a minute and a half later, the Dutch had a 3-goal lead. The Netherlands scored two goals in a span of 52 seconds and jumped to a 4:1 lead (3:45 before the end of the 2nd quarter). That period proved vital in the European champions’ win.
The Canadians came close in the middle of the third period (3:4), and they had a chance to equalize from a penalty 11 seconds before the last break, but Joanne Koenders stopped a shot from Emma Wright.
The Netherlands earned a penalty shot in the 26th minute. Sabine Van Der Sloot didn’t make mistake and pulled her team to a 5:3 lead. The last goal was scored by Canada’s Kyra Christmas (4:5) in the middle of the last period. After that, there were a lot of misses and saves by goalkeepers (Joanne Koenders posted 13, while Canada’s Jessica Gaudreault had 10 saves). But, there were no goals. Canada’s last attempt to secure a penalty shootout was Wright’s shot with a second remaining on the clock, but Koenders didn’t let an equalizer.
Hungary left no chance to New Zealand. The Hungarians gained an early 3:0 lead in the 4th minutes. Rebecca Parkes, who played for New Zealand until 2016, scored the 2nd goal in the match. Parkes moved to Hungary from New Zealand after she was invited by Hungary’s head coach Attila Biro, who was the head coach of the New Zealand’s team for three years (2013-2016).
By halftime, the Hungarians built an 8:3 lead, which increased to 12:4 before the last period. Rita Keszthely was the top scorer of the match (4 goals) in a 17:6 win.
Greece managed to control China in the first quarter and built a nice 4:1 lead. The Greeks were 6:2 up in the 13th minute. After that, China constantly was 3 or 4 goals behind. The Asians managed to reduce the gap to 2 (7:9) 111 seconds before the last break. The Greeks responded with two goals for a new 4-goal advantage (11:7), which they maintained until the end (12:8).
Australia produced a 5:0 rush in the opening 10 minutes of the match with Kazakhstan. The Asians their first goal scored 1:18 before the middle break. The „Aussie Stingers“ dominated the second half, too. Kazakhstan came to 3:8 in the middle of the third quarter. In the remaining time, Australia, led by Bronte Halligan (4 goals) cruised to a win with a new 5:0 series (13:3).
Classification 13th -16th, semifinals
South Africa – South Korea 26:3 (7:1, 4:0, 7:1, 8:1)
South Africa: Gerber 4, Hallendorff 4, Miszewski 4, Wedderburn 3, Macleod 3, Hinrichs 2, Mota 2, Joubert 2, Meecham 1.
South Korea: Kyung 1, Cho 1, J. Lee 1.
Cuba – Japan 9:21 (3:6, 2:6, 2:4, 2:5)
Cuba: Bernal Villa 3, Carrasco 2, Grau Quintero 2, Chavez Pena 1, Diaz Mesa 1.
Japan:Arima 5, Noro 4, Hashida 3, Magariyama 2, Nizawa 2, Inaba 1, Yamamoto 1, Tokumoto 1, Suzuki 1, Sakanoue 1.
Nearly 3.000 spectators attended the 1st match of the day South Korea – South Africa. A young Korean team had an amazing fan’s support, just like in the group stage. But even South Africa was too strong for the Koreans who started to train water polo less than two months ago. The Africans defeated the host 26:3, which is the biggest win in the history of the South African national water polo team. On the other side, the Koreans weren’t sad after the game. They are still learning to play water polo. One of South Korea’s 3 goals were scored by the youngest player at this championship –a 13-years-old Yelim Cho.
Japan achieved the 1st win in Gwangju after losing three games by only two goals in a very strong Group D (against Italy, Australia and China). The Japanese easily defeated Cuba today.
On Monday, South Africa and Japan will play the match for the 13th place, while South Korea and Cuba will face off in the match for the 15th place.