PR 18 - The draw of the World Championships Tournament has been decided
Lausanne (SUI), April 15, 2011 – The draw of the World Championships Tournament was decided today in Shanghai, China, at a ceremony attended by FINA Executive Director Cornel Marculescu, FINA Technical Water Polo Committee Chairman Gianni Lonzi and Vice-Chairman Richard Foster, FINA Bureau Liaison Dimitris Diathesopoulos, FINA Bureau Member from China Qiuping Zhang, local authorities and some of the world’s most distinguished water polo coaches.
The results of the draw are as follows:
The FINA World Championships will be held in Shanghai (CHN) from July 16-31.
After the results, some of the men’s national teams head coaches revealed their expectations:
Ratko Rudic (Croatia): “We are in a very easy group. I would prefer a more difficult beginning and then the games of the quarter final to be easier.”
Sandro Campagna (Italy): “The draw was well-balanced and the venue is fantastic. We will have a great tournament and the fact that the broadcasting of the games will be in high definition will also boost the popularity of our sport. I see a group of teams that are potentially in the first eight; Serbia, Croatia, Hungary, Spain, USA, Australia, Germany, Montenegro and Italy. After our second place at the European championships last year, the team has gained confidence and now we can compete at the same level than any other favourite. We have a duty to win a medal which is also important because this is the way to qualify for the next year’s Olympic Games.”
Dejan Udovicic (Serbia): “The most important in the first stage is to be first so that we can have a day off before the quarter finals. I don’t consider Serbia as the favourite; they are a lot of favourites. The one thing that I am sure is that everybody will play 120% against us. The battle will be hard, especially because we are one year away from the Olympic Games.”
Juan Jané Giralt, China women’s national team head coach and FINA Coaches Commission member, said: “It will be very difficult that the gold and silver escape to USA and Australia. In second place I see the teams of Canada, Russia, China, Greece or Italy. Our dream is a bronze medal. I’m not worried with the pressure of the local fans. When you have such a high objective, such pressure is actually a good thing. We have to play constantly well, because one bad game in the group stage can jeopardise the rest of the tournament.”