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Water polo: USA claimed the crown at the Women’s League Super Final, Canada making a hit

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A moth and a half prior to the 17th FINA World Championships the Women’s World League Super Final took place in Shanghai. The tournament – a key event regarding the preparation for the World Champs- was won by title defender USA team clinching its 11th crown since 2004.

All members of the top 8 in Shanghai will participate in the World Champs this July in Budapest, moreover, several teams will be in the same group again so the six-day tournament was a good time to see what is coming up this summer.

Top athletes have just started preparing, probably it explains some surprising and in some cases disappointing results at the League. Team USA claimed first in group although in the last round against Russia 40 seconds before the end Russians were leading by 2 goals when Olympic and world champion Makenzie Fischer came and scoring two goals she changed the result. The Russian team – finishing third in the end after beating Hungary – played a nail-biting finish in the group match against the Dutch team but the outcome was much more favourable for them in that case: they came up from a 5-goal disadvantage, equalised in their 3-0 last quarter and proved to be victorious in the penalty shootout. 

Photo: USA Waterpolo

Concerning group B, quite surprisingly team Canada led by the Greek head coach Haris Pavlidis won all group matches, against Hungary they won by penalties. It was partly due to the fact that the Australian team was not in its best form, they lost all their group matches and beating Japan in the end they finished 7th.

For the record, in the prelims Canada did an excellent job winning the last quarter 4-0 against Russia (demonstrating how hectic Russia’s performance was) when Ekaterina Prokofjeva missed a penalty shot or to put it differently, one of the best goalkeepers at the tournament, Jessica Gaudreault did a brilliant save.

The finals saw the dominance of team USA against Canada and triumphed 12-6 clinching the World League cup.

Results – Women’s World League Super Final, Shanghai:

Group matches:

Group A:

Russia-Japan 18-9 (5-1, 5-2, 3-3, 5-3)
USA-Netherlands 6-4 (3-0, 1-2, 2-2, 0-0)

USA-Japan 17-4 (4-1, 3-1, 6-1, 4-1)
Russia-Netherlands 14-12 – 5 m penalties (3-4, 2-5, 2-1, 3-0 – 4-2)

Russia-USA 12-13 (3-4, 5-6, 2-1, 2-2)
Japan-Netherlands 8-19 (3-5, 0-7, 3-3, 2-4)

Group A ranking:

1. USA 9 points
2. Russia 5 points
3. Netherlands 4 points
4. Japan 0 point

Group B:

Hungary-Canada 10-11 – 5 m penalties (3-3, 1-2, 3-2, 2-2 – 1-2)
Australia-China 10-14 (3-4, 1-3, 3-3, 3-4)

Australia - Canada 4-8 (0-2, 3-2, 0-2, 1-2)
Hungary - China 16-6 (4-2, 4-0, 4-2, 4-2)

Hungary - Australia 8-3 (3-1, 3-0, 0-2, 2-0)
Canada - China 10-7 (1-0, 4-4, 1-1, 4-2)

Group A ranking:

1. Canada 8 points
2. Hungary 7 points
3. China 3 points
4. Australia 0 point

Quarterfinals:

Russia- China 16-8 (4-2, 5-0, 5-3, 2-3)
Netherlands-Hungary 7-8 (3-3, 0-1, 1-2, 3-2)
USA-Australia 13-4 (3-1, 5-2, 3-1, 2-0)
Japan-Canada 5-9 (3-1, 2-4, 0-2, 0-2)

Semi-finals:

Hungary - USA 4-8 (1-2, 0-4, 0-2, 3-0)
Russia -Canada 10-11 (5-3, 3-1, 2-3, 0-4)

5zh-8th places semi-finals:

Netherlands -Australia 9-5 (2-1, 2-1, 2-1, 3-2)
China -Japan 12-11 (2-3, 2-3, 4-3, 4-2)

7th place:

Australia-Japan 10-8 (5-2, 2-3, 1-2, 2-1)

5th place:

Netherlands - China (14-4 (4-0, 2-3, 4-0, 4-1)

3rd place:

Russia - Hungary 9-7 (3-1, 1-2, 2-0, 3-4)

Final:

USA-Canada 12-6 (2-1, 4-3, 3-2, 3-0)

World League ranking:

1st USA
2nd Canada
3rd Russia
4th Hungary
5th Netherlands
6th China
7th Australia
8th Japan

17th FINA World Championships women’s tournament:

Group A: Italy, Brazil, Canada, China
Group B: New Zealand, South Africa, Spain, USA
Group C: Japan, Netherlands, Hungary, France
Group D: Australia, Russia, Kazakhstan, Greece