Water Polo Women: Day 3: CHN 13 NZL 5
China collected second spot in Group B with a 13-5 victory over New Zealand. This means the World League champion will now have to meet 2008 Olympic champion Netherlands in the sudden-death quarterfinal qualifiers on Saturday.
China had the goods to win easily and put together a solid game. For New Zealand’s part it struggled ferociously and resisted stoutly for China only to breach the defence twice in the first quarter.
Lynlee Smith responded at the top of the second but China took the game to 6-1 at halftime through some impressive attacks.
New Zealand scored three goals in the third period, stunning China with its endurance at that stage. Remember these teams are frequent opponents in the Asia-Oceania round of the FINA World League so know each other well.
New Zealand scored first in the fourth period and held China to just two more goals. China spread the goals around and structured its attacks with precision at times. China looks a little rusty here and will need to lift for its clash with Netherlands, if it wishes to add more medals to those won in the World League Super Final in Beijing in June.
All the regular Chinese scorers were in evidence and they proved they cannot be written off before the weekend. China might have lost its first three encounters with New Zealand but has now won 11 straight at World Championship or World League competition.
Match 24: 20:10, Group CHINA 13 NEW ZEALAND 5
Quarters: 2-0, 4-1, 5-3, 2-1
Referees: Joao Cardenuto (BRA), Brian Littlejohn (GBR).
Extra Man: CHN 6/7. NZL: 1/5
CHINA: Jun Yang, Fei Teng (1), Ping Liu (2), Yujun Sun (2), Jin He (1), Yating Sun, Donglun Song (3), Lu Xu, Xiaohan Mei, Huanhuan Ma (2), Cong Zhang (1), Qun Xia, Ying Wang. Head Coach: Alexander Kleymenov.
NEW ZEALAND: Brooke Millar, Emily Cox, Kelly Mason, Nicole Lewis, Alexandra Boyd (1), Lynlee Smith (1), Sarah Landry, Danielle Lewis, Lauren Sieprath, Casie Bowry (1), Kirsten Hudson, Alexandra Myles (2), Ianetta Hutchinson. Head Coach: Attila Biro.
Alexander Kleymenov (CHN Head Coach):
“It hasn´t been an easy game although we were supposed to be stronger.
The next game against the Netherlands will be much more balanced. We can´t predict what´s going to happen since lot of things have changed from London 2012. The Netherlands weren´t there and we are missing two very important players due to injuries. I´m doing changes every game, trying different players, including the youngsters, and our principal objective now is going into the quarterfinals qualification.”
Sarah Landry (NZL):
“I think we did well. It was a really physical game, so we had to adapt our play to the circumstances of the game. We had nothing to lose and we tried our best.”
Alexandra Boyd (NZL):
“Our next game is against Spain so that would be tough, playing in front of the home team would be a challenge and also very exciting.”
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