Game 38 (M): 21:00, ITALY 10 SPAIN 6
Quarters: 2-1, 3-3, 3-1, 2-1
Referees: Boris MARGETA (SLO), Sergei NAUMOV (RUS)
Extra Man: ITA: 1/7. ESP: 1/12
ITALY: Stefano TEMPESTI, Amaurys PEREZ, Niccolò GITTO, Pietro FIGLIOLI (4), Alex GIORGETTI (1), Maurizio FELUGO (1), Niccoloi FIGARI, Valentino GALLO (1), Christian PRESCIUTTI (2), Deni FIORENTINI, Matteo AICARDI (1), Arnaldo DESERTI, Giacomo PASTORINO. Coach: Alessandro CAMPAGNA.
SPAIN: Inaki AGUILAR, Mario GARCIA, Eric MARSAL (1), Francisco FERNANDEZ (1), Guillermo MOLINA, Marc MINGUELL (1), Mark ROCA, Albert ESPANOL (1), Xavier VALLES (1), Felipe PERRONE, Ivan PEREZ (1), Javier GARCIA, Daniel LOPEZ. Head Coach:
Italy was the team that should have been in the semifinals on current form, earning a clash with Croatia.
Italy had the active actives poling high in the water and going for every shot possible. One such goal typified Italy's intent and desire for victory. FIGLIOLI leaned in a for the foul twice before getting the call. Then he surged forward on the shot from five metres to score. It was one of his four goals, the first two coming in the opening quarter. When PRESCIUTTI scored on double extra, his shot deflected off the defender high into the goal and Italy had a lead from which it could build a victory. That lead was maintained at halftime after an even period. There were two marvellous goals and they both came from Spain. the first was PEREZ twisting down the left to score on extra and then, after Italy went 5-3 ahead, GARCIA finished a three-pass. PERRONE received the pass on the left, whipped over to the right to MINGUELL who quickly slipped it to GARCIA in the middle to score. FIGLIOLI opened the second half and GALLO followed with a low swinging left-armer into the bottom right, catching plenty of steam off the water as it went. Spain went to a timeout at 5:03 but no glee. AICARDI received a high, curving pass on the left post to score at 3:02 for 8-4, surely a goal too far for Spain. But no! FERNANDEZ received a short cross pass on the two-metre line at 2:35 to close the gap to three, the final score of the period. On the first attack of the fourth quarter, Spain took four attempts with three coming from rebounds, the last a little shovel more than an real chance.
Italy had a timeout at 5:30 but it was two attacks later that PRESCIUTTI scored off a cross pass for 9-5. VALLES pushed in a rebound at 1:46, followed by FIGLIOLI's fifth goal from well outside the attacking zone. By winning through to the semifinals and the fact that Serbia is already pre-qualified for the London Olympics, Italy qualifies.