Perth 2012, Day 3 (Men): Brazil takes on and nearly upsets Serbia

World Youth Water Polo Championships

BRA vs SRBDecember 3, 2012 PERTH - Brazil nearly gate-crashed Serbia’s party when they clashed in a Group D men’s match at the FINA World Youth Water Polo Championships at Perth’s Challenge Stadium on Monday. Brazil rattled in three unanswered goals to start the game and kept Serbia honest for the rest of the match. Brazil trailed 4-3 at halftime and 7-6 at three-quarter time and was just 9-8 behind inside the final five minutes before Serbian Olympic bronze medallist Dusan Mandic scored his third consecutive goal and cruised to 12-8 before conceding a late goal for 12-9. It was a fantastic effort from the Brazilians who will be hosting the 2016 Olympic Games and augurs well for the future of the game in the country.

While Brazil’s shooters were piercing Serbia’s wall at will, the closeness of the match can be laid at the feet, or more importantly, hands of goalkeeper Bernardo Campos. His blistering speed and ability to stop shots in the corners was paramount to Brazil’s ability to stay in the match. He stopped a minimum of 12 telling shots and set up goals at the other end. Finally, Serbia’s strength and calmness under pressure showed through for its third victory.

Kazakhstan scored the other Group D win, its first of the tournament, downing Peru 15-6. In Group B, Croatia slammed New Zealand 17-4 with a hat-trick from Luka Bukic, son of 1984 and 1988 Olympic champion Perica Bukic, who played for the then Yugoslavia. Fittingly, Perica’s coach from that era, current Olympic champion coach Ratko Rudic, was in the stands watching the Croatian youngsters. In the second Group A match, Australia, thanks to seven goals from Gordon Marshall, defeated South Africa 15-4.

In Group C, Greece sent off Iran 16-5 and Romania had a tough time shaking off Uzbekistan 9-8. Romania earned a brutality foul when 4-3 ahead after Abbas Sayliev (UZB) allegedly kicked his opponent in the head midway through the second period. Romania converted the penalty but in the ensuing four minutes of a man down, Uzbekistan acquitted itself well with a 1-1 scoreline. Later in the match, with Uzbekistan coming back, Romania called an illegal timeout and Kirril Rustamov, who scored 15 goals against Trinidad & Tobago on Sunday, swam up to take the penalty and hopefully his fifth goal in the dying seconds but struck the left upright.

Canada beat Egypt 14-10 in the only Group A match. It was Egypt’s first game of the tournament and it played well but against a Canadian team desperate for a first victory.

Day 3 Match Reports


Game 17: 9:00, Group C, GREECE 16 IRAN 5
Quarters: 2-1, 3-0, 5-3, 6-1
Referees: Risto Damcevski (FYROM), Adil Aimbetov (KAZ)
Extra Man: GRE 1/5, IRI 1/5
Pens:  Nil
GREECE: Nikitas Paraskevopoulos, Michail Kazazis (6), Spyridon Fotopoulos, Emmanouil Prekas (2), Chrysovalantis Chrysospathis (1), Konstantinos Gouvis (1), Georgios Dervisis, Evangelos Potamianos, Marios Chatzigoulas (5), Nikolaos Alvertis, Panteleimon Kalogerakos (1), Emmanouil Solanakis, Alexandros Koumis. Athanasios Kechagias.
IRAN: Mehran Seyed Bagheri, Masoud Ahmadi, Mahmoud Gholamnejad, Malek Khanbanan Hamed (3), Ali Mohammadi Gahroei, Ali Khaledi Tabar, Alireza Moghaddam, Nima Jamshidi Orak, Sheikhighalehsardi Reza (1), Nima Shahbazi, Heydari Mohammadmehdi, Ramtin Osati, Mohammad Salemi. Head Coach: Davood Rezasoltari.

GRE vs IRI - credit: Anthony Pearse

Michail Kazazis and Marios Chatzigoulas scored 11 goals as Greece overwhelmed a defiant Iran 16-5 in a men’s Group C match at Challenge Stadium on Monday. Iran proved a constant threat to the Greeks, especially in the first and third periods, but Greece had control of the second and fourth quarters. Both teams showcased power shooters with some accurate outside shots.

The strongly built Kazazis scored four of his six goals in the final quarter as Greece swamped Iran. Chatzigoulas scored twice in the third and in each of the other periods. In the early stages the wood was peppered a lot as defence steered goals away from the scoring zone.

The strength of the players was evident but none more so than Kazazis who relished using his bulk to turn and torment the Iranian goalkeeper. Konstantinos Gouvis (GRE) said of the match

“It wasn’t a good game. We weren’t concentrated and we were too nervous at the beginning. The next game (Uzbekistan) we will have to concentrate better and do what the coach tells us. We have to win. We are a better team than them.”

Game 18: 10:20, Group C, ROMANIA 9 UZBEKISTAN 8
Quarters: 3-3, 3-1, 3-2, 0-2
Referees:  William MacKay (CAN), Ahmad Farman (KUW)
Extra Man: ROU 4/10  UZB 1/5
Pens:  ROU 1/1, UZB 1/2
ROMANIA: Marius Tic, Mihnea Gheorghe (5), Andrei Prioteasa, Robert Gergelyfi, Catalin Alexa (2), Alexandru Sfarle (2), Vlad Dragomirescu, Cristian Calin, Bogdan Paleacu, Andrei Laza, Levente Vancsik, Tudor Neagu, David Sacui. Head Coach: Viorel Rus.
UZBEKISTAN: Stanislav Pashkanov, Timur Razzakov, Miraziz Qosimov (1), Amir Kurbanbaev, Mirsodik Yodgorov, Aleksey Zaytsev (2), Kirill Rustamov (4), Egor Chumachenko (1), Abbas Sayliev, Semyon Selifontov, Artur Kim, Maksim Krakhotin, Radion Khabibullaev. Head Coach: Aleksandr Sokolov.

ROU vs UZB - credit: Anthony Pearse

Romania gained a second win — 9-8 — in a controversial game but it could have been a draw if a last-gasp penalty shot had not hit the post in its men’s Group C match against Uzbekistan.

Romania earned a brutality foul when 4-3 ahead after Abbas Sayliev (UZB) allegedly kicked his opponent in the head midway through the second period. Romania converted the penalty but in the ensuing four minutes of a man down, Uzbekistan acquitted itself well with a 1-1 scoreline.

But the damage had been done and a 6-4 deficit was going to need plenty of work to bridge. Uzbekistan’s superstar from Sunday, Kirill Rustamov, added two more first-half goals to his 15 against Trinidad & Tobago but, more importantly, netted twice, once from penalty, for 6-6 at 3:13 in the third quarter.

Romania called timeout and converted the extra-man opportunity through Mihnea Gheorghe. He was left clear soon after on extra, converting again and just to rub salt into the wound, lobbed on counter, for his fourth of the match, to close the third period 9-6.

Aleksey Zaytsev (UZB) scored from centre forward while underwater and Egor Chumachenko (UZB) narrowed the margin to one with goals more than five minutes apart in the fourth quarter.

A double exclusion foul then caused anxiety for the referees and bench with the game stopped for nearly five minutes as referees and FINA Delegates conversed. A table error in flagging the excluded player created mayhem and the Romanians took a timeout. For some time afterwards the players languished as people conferred. The clock was then wound back and the excluded players sent back to their corners.

Uzbekistan took a timeout to no avail with 40 seconds left and Romania called a timeout but by the time the hooter was sounded, Uzbekistan had won back the ball and a five-metre penalty awarded. Superstar Rustamov bounced the ball into the left-hand upright, Romania retained the ball and a draw was averted.

Rustamov’s parents, who were in the stand, were upset with the loss. Father Boris Rustamov is the women’s Head coach in Perth and mother Natalya Rustamova the designated referee. Romanian Head coach Viorel Rus puts experience down as the reason for the Romanian victory.

“We made many mistakes and missed a lot. We expected the game against Uzbekistan to be hard; we expect them to give their all. In my opinion, we won because we were more experienced.”

Game 19: 11:40, Group D, PERU 6 KAZAKHSTAN 15
Quarters: 1-6, 1-3, 2-2, 2-4
Referees: Adrian Alexandrescu (ROU), Daniel Bartels (AUS)
Extra Man: PER 4/14, KAZ 4/11
Pens: PER 1/1, KAZ 1.1
PERU: Luis Vidal, Nick Pizarro, Aldo Rodriguez, Rodrigo Recabarrew, Eduardo Grandes (1), Victor Giordano Castillo, Gerson Rolawdo, Piero Padno, Nicolas Rodruquez, Diego Villar, Agusto Otero (2), Sebastian Morales (3), Jesus Angulo. Head Coach: Jose Antonio Luque.
KAZAKHSTAN: Dmitriy Kuprin, Stanislav Tsoy, Vadim Safiullin, Alexandr Godovanyuk ()3), Altay Altaev (4), Rustem Garayev, Bolat Turlykhanov (2), Yegor Berbelyuk, Raul Mudrik (1), Yersainov Makhambet (6), Miras Aubakirov, Andrey Sukhoparov. Head Coach: Nemanja Knezevic.

PER vs KAZ - credit: Anthony Pearse

Kazakhstan broke a win drought with a 15-6 Group D victory over Peru in the men’s competition. After losing to group giants Italy (26-5) and Serbia (20-1), Kazakhstan had a game to enjoy, starting strongly with a 6-1 opening quarter and being content with keeping Peru at bay.

The game was not without controversy with two red cards dished out in the final period, one for each team. Firstly Alexandr Godovanyuk was sent from the pool two minutes into the period and four minutes later Aldo Rodriguez gained the same suspension.

The match was enthralling and not played with spite as Peru worked tirelessly to restrain the stronger Kazakhs. Yersainov Makhambet was the go-to player, scoring twice in the opening period and three times in the third en route to a six-goal haul. Altay Altaev, who was strong at centre forward and a threat everywhere, scored four goals, including a pair in the third.

The tireless Sebastian Morales helped keep Peru in the game, scoring two of his three goals in the second half when Peru turned a 9-2 halftime deficit into 11-4 at the final break, an excellent effort. This became 11-5 before Kazakhstan stretched it to 15-5 with two minutes remaining. Sebastian Morales, Brazil’s top scorer, said he was disappointed with the goals he missed.

“We feel disappointed. We tried very hard; we gave it all we’ve got. We are very sad because of the result. I feel bad, some goals I missed. When I get goals I feel great. We had a lot of chances.”

Kazakhstan head coach Nemanja Knezevic says it is crucial for them to win Wednesday’s game against Brazil in order to make the top eight.

“It was our first win in the championships so we are very happy. It is very important to win Wednesday’s game against Brazil. It’s important for me, for my team and for Kazakhstan, we are hoping to go into the final eight. We must win; we want to be in the final eight.”

When asked how he felt about the red cards handed down in the game, he replied “This is nothing for me. When I played I received 10 times as much.”

Game 20: 13:00, Group D, SERBIA 12 BRAZIL 9
Quarters: 2-3, 2-0, 3-3, 5-3
Referees: Michail Birakis (GRE), Anastasiya Skovpina (UZB)
Extra Man: SRB 3/10 BRA 3/12
Pens: Nil
SERBIA: Milan Vitorovic, Mateja Asanovic (1), Milos Maksimovic (3), Drasko Gogov (1), Nikola Radulovic, Stefan Ilic, Dusan Mandic (3), Marko Manojlovic (1), Dimitrije Obradovic, Dorde Tanaskovic, Ognjen Stojanovic (2), Nikola Jaksic, Lazar Dobozanov. Head Coach: Dejan Savic.
BRAZIL: Bernardo Campos, Pedro Stellet, Leon Psanquevich, Felipe Martins, Guilherme Campos, Pedro Real Vergara (2), Andrey Lopes (1), Henrique Vasconcelo (3), Guilherme Gomes (1), Gabriel Salgado (2), Caio Marques, Lucas Franca, Matheus Sorilha. Head Coach: Angelo Coelho.

SRB vs BRA - credit: Anthony Pearse

Serbia beat Brazil as expected — 12-9 — but the resistance from the South Americans says a lot of the country’s programme ahead of the 2016 Rio de Janeiro Olympic Games. The Brazilian youngsters stunned the Serbians with a 3-0 opening and the spectacular play of goalkeeper Bernardo Campos kept the crowd and the Brazilians alight.

Campos was supreme and his amazing saves in the first period were instrumental in the 3-0 start. Constantly he thwarted the strong Serbians, sometimes snapping at cannons and deflecting them.

His height out of the water cast a deep shadow over the goal. While Campos was the giant killer with at least a dozen saves, Henrique Vasconcelo was doing his part at the other end of the pool.

He slotted an 8m shot for the 3-0 score and, after Serbia changed the score to 4-3 at halftime, Vasconcelo netted the first two goals of the third period for a 5-4 Brazilian advantage.

Serbia regained the lead at 6-5; Brazil equalised via Pedro Vergaro and Milos Maksimovic (SRB), who scored either side of the first break, claimed his third on counter-attack for 7-6 after three quarters.

Brazil had to play catch-up water polo in the final period bringing the game back to 8-7 and 9-8. But Brazil did not reckon with the magic of London Olympic Games bronze medallist Dusan Mandic, who scored the first three Serbian goals of the period. His sharp left arm worked a charm, except for his final attempt that was blocked.

Never mind, 10-8 became 12-8 in quick time with Brazil closing the match through Andrey Lopes with 21 seconds remaining. It was a super effort by the Brazilians and bodes well for a handful of players who will be pushing for Olympics berths in 2016.

Serbian Head coach Dejan Savic said he did not expect the Brazilians to be that strong. “We were a little bit tired and we knew we had a big game tomorrow (Italy on Tuesday). I tried a little bit to keep the team calm.” When asked how he felt when three goals down in the first quarter: “I was calm. No panic. It was just the beginning. The game was not easy but I knew we would win.”

Brazil’s Campos said: “People think we’re the worst team in the group. We’re out to prove them wrong. We played a good game and we’re very happy. I made a lot of saves and that was probably the best game of my life.”

When asked about the vocal Brazilian girl support, he said: “They’re our friends and we love them. It helps to have a good crowd.”

Game 21: 14:20, Group A, EGYPT 10 CANADA 14
Quarters: 2-4, 2-4, 4-3, 2-3
Referees: Andrej Franulovic (CRO), Masoud Rezvani (IRI)
Extra Man: EGY 1/10 CAN 5/14
Pens: EGY 1/1
EGYPT: Mostafa Mohamed, Omar Atlia (1), Mohamed El Shishtawy, Moataz Ahmed, Amr Hassan (1), Mostafa Akl, Yehia Mohamed (2), Mahmoud Abdelgawed (3), Thakeb Mahmoud, Abdelrahman Abbas (1), Khaled Sobhi (1), Basel Abdellatif (1), Mohamed Mohamed. Head Coach: Mahmoud Eid.
CANADA: Drake Greschner, Ethan Davis, Maxime Gallant (2), Martin Pelland, Harrison Watt, Oscar Henning, Elias Issa (2), David Lapins (4), Eric Graham (1), Connor Perry (1), Devon Thumwood (2), Nikola Curcija (2), Virgile Chabot. Head Coach: Robert Couillard.

CAN vs EGY - credit: Anthony Pearse

Canada won its first game after defeating Group A rival Egypt 14–10 in day-three men’s action. Just seconds into the opening term, Devon Thumwood scored Canada’s first goal, swiftly followed by David Lapins, who scored four for the match. Omar Atlia scored Egypt’s first goal late into the first term, luckily rebounding off Canadian keeper Drake Greschners’ hands into the back of the net.

Canada’s Elias Issa and Eric Graham both were able to score late in the term, but Egypt fought back with Yehia Mohamed scoring, for 4-2. Greschners began to shine throughout the second term with a number of skilful saves and accurate passes. The second term saw four goals from the dominant Canadians and just two from the Egyptians, for 8-4 at halftime.

Just 30 seconds into the third, Khaled Sobhi scored Egypt’s fifth goal. Canada quickly responded with a third goal from Lapins. Egypt, in an attempted comeback, scored the following two goals but was unable to capitalise on an extra-man situation with a strong save from Greschners. A cheeky half-pool goal from Harrison Watt in the final second wasn’t awarded. Canada led 11-8 going into the final term.

Lapins showed strategy throughout the fourth, scoring his fourth and final goal with just one second remaining on the shot clock. The Canadians’ accuracy and precision remained too much for the Egyptians, with three consecutive goals. Egypt’s Mahmoud Abdelgawad replied with his third and final goal, which was the final goal of the match. Four-goal star Lapins (CAN) was pleased to gain the win.

"They put up a good fight, but we achieved our goal of winning the game. Everyone should be proud of his effort. Everyone stayed positive and fought the whole game through."

Khaled Sobhi (EGY) was disappointed and believes his team could have overcome the Canadians. “We didn’t win because we warmed up too late into the game, but we could have won.”

Game 24: 18:30, Group B, CROATIA 17 NEW ZEALAND 4
Quarters: 4-1, 4-0, 5-2, 4-1
Referees: Alessandro Severo (ITA), Joseph Peila (USA)
Extra Man: CRO 2/9 NZL 0/14
Pens: CRO 2/2
CROATIA: Ivan Marcelic, Luka Bukic (3), Lovre Milos (1), Andro Gagulic, Slavko Calic, Marino Cagalj (1), Luka Lozina, Antonio Buha (3), Antun Goreta (2), Marino Divkovic, Andrija Basic (2), Ivan Zivkovic (2), Deni Saric (3). Head Coach: Hrvoje Hrestak.
NEW ZEALAND: Thomas Kingsmill, Matthew Lewis, Mathew Hansen, Daniel John Kayes (1), Cameron Hayes, Tyler Levi, Mitchell Goff, Braeden Drennan, Rory McJorrow, John (Jack) McGuiness (1), Owen Chambers (1), Anton Sunde, Sid Terence Dymond. Head Coach: Jonathon Ware.

CRO vs NZL - credit: Anthony Pearse

On the back of a powerful team effort, Croatia continued its unbeaten run with a comprehensive 17-4 Group B victory over New Zealand. In the first quarter Croatia scored four unanswered goals until the last 36 seconds when New Zealand scored its first goal by Tyler Levi.

New Zealand was unable to break through Croatia’s strong defence in the second quarter and Croatia’s attack methods seemed to get stronger when Andrija Basic was in the water, the sharpshooter scoring two goals in the remaining minute of the half.

In the third quarter, when Croatia was leading the game by 10, New Zealand tried to slow down the pace of the game to keep Croatia at bay. Croatia finished the game as it started — strongly. New Zealand managed to score its fourth goal, but was defeated by a margin of 13.

After the game, New Zealand’s Mitchell Goff said his side hoped it had earned Croatia’s respect.

“We feel pretty good, even though we lost,” Goff said. “I think we got a bit more respect from Croatia, as they are the best team and country at this sport.”

Croatia’s last-minute man Andrija Basic said his side is on track for a podium finish. “The beginning we went very well, we scored four and they one,” Basic said. “We never stopped. We feel no pressure being the favorites, we came for a medal and will do anything for it.”

Game 23: 20:00, Group B, AUSTRALIA 15 SOUTH AFRICA 4
Quarters: 2-2, 3-1, 7-0, 3-1
Referees: Nenad Golijanin (SRB), Balasz Fekete (HUN)
Extra Man: AUS 8/18 RSA 0/1
Pens: AUS 1/1, RSA 1/1
AUSTRALIA: Anthony Hrysanthos, Blake Buckley (2), Davis Verboon (1), William Mackay (2), Luke Pavillard, Matthew Perrott, Matthew Skinner (1), Lachlan Edwards, Gordon Marshall (7), Justin Trabinger (2), Reed Cotterill (1), Ciaran Wolohan, Sam Cocokios. Head Coach: Chris Wybrow.
SOUTH AFRICA: Franco Conversano, Michael Watt-Pringle, Dayne Jagga, Murray Howard (1), Chad Roman, Nicholas Downes (1), Kyle Gibson (1), Campbell Gregory, Yasien Meth, Joshua Stubbs, Michael Young, Kyle Westman (1), Julian Lewis. Head Coach: Ryan Weideman.

AUS vs RSA - credit: Anthony Pearse

Australia bounced back from its opening-day, two-goal loss to title favourite Croatia to wear down South Africa and win their Group B encounter 15-4. The difference was ultra-impressive Gordon Marshall and his five-goal tidal wave in the third quarter for a game-high seven when the halftime score moved from 5-3 to 12-3.

Australia did not have it all its own way in the first half with the first quarter squared at two while Australia had a 3-1 second quarter that did not look convincing. William Mackay scored the first two goals for Australia and Murray Howard with a screamer from 8m and Kyle Westman from centre forward matched the Aussies.

Australia went two up after the break through Justin Trabinger and (8m) and Gordon Marshall (centre-forward goal). Then two penalty goals, one apiece, had the game at 5-3 with halftime looming.

Australia went to full press looking for counters in the third period and twice hit the post or crossbar before Matthew Skinner drilled one off the left post for 6-3. Marshall scored twice in succession, once on counter from 5m and the other off a near-post pass on extra-man attack.

South Africa called a timeout immediately after Marshall’s exploits but Australia pressed the green caps well out and turned over the ball. Michael Young (RSA) transgressed and gained a red card from which Marshall converted the six-on-five attack.

Marshall made it four in succession on the next attack and half a minute later was not passed the ball when clear in front of the cage but given instead to the free Blake Buckley to score.
Marshall closed the quarter with a centre-forward shot for his fifth goal in under five minutes and sixth for the game.

Davis Verboon and Justin Trabinger, both on counter, took the score to 14-3 at the top of the fourth quarter. It took a while for another goal to come as both teams defended stoutly and Australia kept hitting the wood.

Marshall was the man to score at 1:12. South Africa was not to be denied in a rare foray into Aussie waters with Kyle Gibson taking a 5m foul and scoring inside the final minute. A South African timeout at 0:27 yielded nothing and Australia had a first win.

Marshall was happy with his performance: “It was definitely a team effort. The game plan suited me a lot. I just converted the chances that I was provided.”

South Africa’s Yasien Meth said: “It was hectic and we improved from the Croatia game (lost 25-1).”