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Barcelona 2013

Water Polo Women: Day 2: HUN 10 ITA 4

BCN2013 - Water Polo

HUN vs ITAThe hoodoo continues for Italy when it comes to playing Hungary at FINA World Championships. Italy has now lost six of seven clashes with Hungary, winning only once and that was for gold in Fukuoka, Japan in 2001. Tonight it was Hungary — or should we say Rita Keszthelyi and Barbara Bujka —  who defeated Italy 10-4.

It’s all about teamwork and Hungary had plenty, especially when it came to passing to the two superstars. While Rita was popping high around the cage to score her goals, Barbara scored all hers from close in with an arm pent up with so much fury that the Cruz Roja (Red Cross) should be in attendance when she shoots.

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Water Polo Women: Day 2: KAZ 9 BRA 5

BCN2013 - Water Polo

KAZ vs BRAKazakhstan broke a deadlock steeped in history and it all came down to a fantastic middle half in defeating Brazil 9-5 in a Group D encounter in day-two action. The teams had met twice in World Championships with two wins apiece and a draw. Also, both teams had scored 36 goals. Also, both teams were winless after the first day.

Today it was Kazakhstan who took charge after being 2-1 down and then 2-2 at the quarter. Tight defence, countering and snap shooting in front of goal gave Kazakhstan the match.

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Water Polo Women: Day 2: USA 10 CAN 8

BCN2013 - Water Polo

USA vs CANOlympic champion United States of America beat Canada 10-8 in a crucial Group C encounter. USA twice went on four-goal sprees — at the start of the match and straddling halftime — and looked impressive at 9-3 halfway through the third period.

Then the wheels fell off the USA wagon as Canada struck back, getting previously inaccurate shots on target. Stephanie Valin and Dominique Perrault gave Canada a 9-5 chance at the final break.

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Water Polo Women: Day 2: GRE 13 GBR 7

BCN2013 - Water Polo

GRE vs GBRThe power and physical presence of Alexandra Asimaki belies her size and woe betide any player who takes her lightly. Asimaki scored a tournament-high five goals to lead world champion Greece to a 13-7 Group C victory over Great Britain, a match that was undecided at halftime but had Greece 8-5 ahead at the final break.

Asimaki plays centre forward and dominates, making her one of the world’s best. She scored three in a row and two of those within 20 seconds, to take Greece from 3-2 ahead to 5-3 up.

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Water Polo Women: Day 2: AUS 14 CHN 5

BCN2013 - Water Polo

AUS vs CHNAustralia scored its 20th major championship victory over China with a stunning third-quarter effort that sent the opposition reeling and produced a real upset. By scoring six unanswered goals after being 5-4 behind at halftime, Australia stamped itself as a true contender for the crown in Barcelona. China went scoreless in the final quarter as well in what was a remarkable effort by Australia.

In the FINA World League preliminary round in Auckland, New Zealand in May, Australia won the first encounter in penalty shootout after being tied at 11-11 (final score 15-13) and then trounced China 17-7 in the return match. Today’s nine-goal margin echoes that result.

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Water Polo Women, Day 2: RSA 7 NZL 14

BCN2013 - Water Polo

RSA vs NZLNew Zealand maintained its winning margin record against South Africa with a 14-7 victory on day two of the women’s competition. The teams had met just once before with the Kiwis a 12-5 winner at the 2009 World Championships — the only previous encounter between these two countries at the major FINA events.

New Zealand’s victory was built on aggression and accurate shooting with Kirsten Hudson and Alexandra Myles on fire with four goals each. New Zealand had the luxury of counter attack as a potent weapon, especially in the second half as the South Africans started to tire. New Zealand also had the better of the extra-man attack and looked stronger around the field.

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Greece opens men’s water polo with stunning upset over Montenegro

BCN2013 - Water Polo

water polo men's competition, day 1Greece turned on the action tap and caused a huge upset in the opening match with a deluge of early goals against Montenegro for a 6-4 victory in the FINA Men’s Water Polo World Championships at the Bernat Picornell Pool. Just two weeks ago when the teams met in a four-nation tournament, world No 4 Montenegro thrashed Greece 11-4, but today it was all Greece as Montenegro was kept scoreless for the first half and gained two consolation goals in the final minute.

In the other Group A match, Spain defeated New Zealand 18-3 in the final encounter of the day with Felipe Perrone scoring five goals, the best of the day.

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Water Polo Men: Day 1: ESP 18 NZL 3

BCN2013 - Water Polo

ESP vs NZLSpain opened its campaign with an 18-3 Group A victory over New Zealand, starting slowly, building to a crescendo in the third quarter, before easing off the accelerator.

The inexperienced Kiwis will learn to fly at these championships and with an average age of about four years younger than the Spanish and a vast chasm in the number of internationals played, they performed well.

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Water Polo Men: Day 1: GER 9 KAZ 8

BCN2013 - Water Polo

KAZ vs GERWhen more than 200 yellow-shirted German junior water polo players are urging you on behind the team bench, you must perform. This urging helped Germany to stave off Kazakhstan in a final-quarter thriller for a 9-8 Group D victory and gave the Germans a 2-1 edge in clashes at this level.

The win looked assured when 9-4 ahead at the third break.  However, in a little over two minutes Kazakhstan scored an incredible four goals with 1:44 still left on the clock.

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Water Polo Men: Day 1: ITA 9 ROU 4

BCN2013 - Water Polo

ITA vs ROUReigning champion Italy maintained control throughout against Romania in a match where the Italians led 4-0 after five and half minutes. It was the second time Italy has beaten Romania at the FINA World Championships, having lost the 2009 clash. In fact, in the past 10 occasions these teams have met before Barcelona the ledger was even.

Not so tonight as Italy was all about control. Keep calm and score goals when chances appear. Romania gave up a centre-forward goals and one on extra from the same position by Matteo Aicardi, another on extra by Felugo and then a seven-metre strike by Christian Presciutti. It was the sort of start that Italy relishes and one that Romania would not want to telephone home about. It was after seven minutes of play before Tiberiu Negrean struck home for Romania.

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