By the end of Monday we will know who’s going to fight for the medals of the 17th FINA Women’s Water Polo World Championships.
The day’s going to start with qualification matches, firstly with the fight between the national teams of South Africa and Kazakhstan, with the aim of avoiding finishing last for both teams.
Afterwards, Japan will face off Brazil for the 13th place, directly followed by presumably the most disappointed team in the World Championships. The silver medallist of the previous World Championships, the Netherlands lost against Russia by the score of 11-10. As a result, the team missed the opportunity to get amongst the top eight.
Photos: Máté Balogh/Bp2017
Disappointment may well be intensified for the team as Arno Havenga’s team finished on the losing side in the final of last year’s European Championships too, therefore missing the Olympic participation directly, so they had to play in the qualification tournament. The Dutch water polo society organised the event in Gouda but the Netherlands lost the fight against Spain that meant the national team couldn’t participate in the Rio Olympic Games.
The team lost against Russia by a one goal margin, after successfully turning the match around several times, even by the score of 4-1, 6-2, 7-3. After a seemingly problematic Russian time out call, the Netherlands didn’t accept the final result of the match but their request was declined. The team has a good chance of reaching up to the 9th place as their best case scenario in the fight for one of the 9th-12th places.
The United States is not only the favourite to win their quarter-final against Australia, but they are also the most likely winners of the whole tournament. It would be a surprise if Rowie Webster’s team could challenge Adam Krikorian’s. The two teams faced each other in Hungary, previously at Miskolctapolca’s international training tournament where the United States won with the score of 14-7.
The Hungarian water polo team will jump into the pool at the 7th match of the day. The team is in an incredible shape, they showed us an impressive performance against the Netherlands. However, Attila Bíró, the head coach was careful when he talked about the upcoming match with the Canadians, a national team that showed us a great deal of improvement under the management of Theoharis Pavlidis, the former head coach of Olympiacos Piraeus. This improvement was demonstrated by their second place in the World League Super Final, where the two teams clash resulted in a tie.
All in all, the Hungarians are more likely to win the match, just as the Greek national team that faces off Spain in the last match of the day. The game may prove to be exciting anyway, as the 6th and 7th placed team of the previous World Championships will fight for getting into the semifinals.
The winner of the match will face the winner of the Hungarian-Canadian clash. On the other branch, the team getting through from the fight of Italy and Russia will face the winner of the American-Australian fight.
In the quarter-finals:
Monday, July 24:
W35 14:50 - Italy-Russia
W36 16:10 - United States-Australia
W37 20:30 - Hungary-Canada
W38 22:00 - Greece-Spain
For the 15th place:
W31 09:30 – South Africa-Kazakhstan
For the 13th place:
W32 10:50 – Brazil-Japan
For 9-11th places:
W33 12:10 – New Zealand - Netherlands
W34 13:30 – China - France