World Youth Water Polo Championships

FINA organises a men's and women's World Championships for young water polo players every year. From 2011 on, a new age group competition format has been launched with World Junior Championships for “20 Year & Under” taking place in odd years and World Youth Championships “18 Years & Under” in even years.

In 2012, the first-ever FINA World Youth Water Polo Championships (18 & U) for both men and women was held in Perth (AUS). The event gathers 16 to 20 teams, about 200 players, from the strongest and rising nations in the sport.

The second edition of the FINA World Men's Youth Water Polo Championships (18 & U) will be held in Istanbul (TUR) from August 2-10, 2014. The women's Championships will take place in Madrid (ESP) from August 25-31, 2014.

Perth 2012, Day 4 (Men): Italy crushes Serbia and one win short of quarterfinal berth

World Youth Water Polo Championships

ITA vs SRB - credit: Anthony PearseDecember 4, 2012 PERTH - Down but not out. That’s the word from Serbian great Dejan Savic, who is coaching his national boys’ team at the FINA World Youth Water Polo Championships in Perth. Serbia struck a brick wall against Italy on Tuesday, losing 10-4 in what was billed as one of the most highly anticipated group stage games of the tournament. Savic said tomorrow was another day and expects his team to lift for the rest of the championship.

Italy has just winless Peru to pass on Wednesday to claim Group D and advance to Friday’s quarterfinals. The well-drilled Italians were superior in every facet of play and signalled their championship intentions to the rest of the men’s competition.

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Perth 2012, Day 3 (Women): USA, Greece, Australia and Canada win through to quarterfinals

World Youth Water Polo Championships

ITA vs USA - credit: Anthony PearseDecember 4, 2012 PERTH - United States of America, Greece, Australia and Canada have won their groups of the women’s competition at the FINA World Youth Water Polo Championships at Perth’s Challenge Stadium. They earn the day off tomorrow and next front for Thursday’s quarterfinals. USA became the first group winner in Group C, despite losing 9-10 to Italy today. Two previous wins earned four points and Italy lifted to four. Hungary defeated India 38-2 leaving the top three teams equal on points.

In the first tiebreak, USA and Hungary finished with +1 when taking into account the goals scored in the three games between the trio, and Italy had -2. In the next tiebreak, USA won the match between against Hungary 8-6 for the group win. Italy proved the better team throughout with more experience and sharper reactions, especially on extra-man attack. To the USA’s credit, it turned a three-quarter 8-5 deficit into 8-8 midway through the final quarter, only to have two quick extra-man goals scored against. A consolation goal came 17 seconds from time.

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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.

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Perth 2012, Day 2 (Women): Canada and Brazil battle out a 9-9 draw

World Youth Water Polo Championships

BRA vs CANDecember 3, 2012 PERTH - The battle of the Americas took pride of place in day-two action of the women’s competition at the FINA World Youth Water Polo Championships in Perth on Monday. Canada and Brazil battled to a 9-9 Group B draw after a see-saw match in which Canada led 4-2 at halftime and the game was locked at 6-6 heading into the final quarter.

The game had many highlights, not least of all stirring comeback periods from both sides and another brilliant individual scoring display by Brazil’s Izabella Chiappini, who bagged another seven goals to go with the eight she put past New Zealand on Sunday. Canada was playing its first match of the tournament while Brazil now tops the three-team group with three points following a first-up win over New Zealand (13-10), who had a bye today.

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Perth 2012, Day 2 (Men): Perpetual scorer Rustamov tallies 15 goals for Uzbekistan

World Youth Water Polo Championships

UZB vs TRIDecember 2, 2012 PERTH - For a team to score 15 goals in a match is a good result, although Uzbek Kirill Rustamov scored that number on his own as his Uzbekistan team beat Trinidad & Tobago 19-16 in a Group C game at the 1st FINA World Youth Water Polo Championships at the Challenge Stadium. Rustamov scored six goals in each of the middle two quarters and finished with two in the final period to go with his meager first-quarter strike. He scored them from everywhere, but particularly deadly from outside. He also showed his prowess in the centre-forward position.

He will be a marked man in upcoming encounters but said after the match: “It was very, very hard because we came just yesterday and had 32 hours with no sleep. We had just one training session, so it’s been very hard.” What did he think of his 15 goals? “It’s good but we are a good side with lots of good players and a good future.”

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Perth 2012, Day 1 (Women): Greece shoots four in the final quarter to down Russia by two

World Youth Water Polo Championships

GRE vs RUSDecember 2, 2012 PERTH - Greece stamped itself as a medal contender with a gutsy 11-9 final-quarter comeback win over Russia on the opening day of the women’s competition at the 1st FINA World Youth Water Polo Championships at Perth’s Challenge Stadium today. After a drawn first half, Greece shot to a two-goal lead only to see Russia overtake and itself have a two-goal margin by three-quarter time. Then Greece stood up and took control of the game, blasting in four unanswered goals for the cherished victory, which could mean Group D dominance.

South Africa broke a 2-1 deadlock from the first to the third quarter to beat neighbour Zimbabwe 9-1. It was Zimbabwe’s debut at this level as well. Australia sent a strong message to the other contenders with a 22-2 win over Czech Republic in one of the feature night matches indoors before an estimated 500 people. Uzbekistan and Indonesia battled hard in the other Group A encounter with the latter claiming the two points with an 8-6 margin. It was Indonesia’s baptism of fire at FINA level. Another to face the music on the first day for the first time diminutive India, losing 34-0 to the mighty United States of America in Group C. Hungary and Italy went at it hammer and tongs before Hungary triumphed 7-4 in the other Group C match.

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Perth 2012, Day 1 (Men): Croatia upstages Australia on opening day of World Youth Championships

World Youth Water Polo Championships

CRO vs AUSDecember 1, 2012 PERTH - Class play from some of the best 18 and under men’s water polo teams in the world was on display at Perth’s Challenge Stadium on Saturday. It was the opening day of what is billed as the 1st FINA World Youth Water Polo Championships and the young men started the tournament with women following on Sunday.

It is the second time this age group has contested world championships following the 2009 events in Croatia and Russia and won by the host nations in what were declared as World Junior Championships, due to an age group change. These championships continue the long tradition of Challenge Stadium hosting FINA events with the FINA Championships of 1991 and 1998 paramount. It has also hosted two junior women’s world championships (2001 and 2005), a women’s World Cup (2003), the FINA Masters’ Worlds (2008) and the Olympic Games Qualification Tournament for men in 1988 soon after the venue opened.

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34 teams gather for 1st FINA World Youth Water Polo Championships

World Youth Water Polo Championships

Most of the 34 teams have arrived in Perth for the first-ever FINA World Youth Water Polo Championships. These championships are for the best 18 and under players in the world and it is the second time this age group has been staged — the first boys’ and girls’ championships with Croatia boys winning in Sibenik, Croatia and Russia girls winning in Khanty-Mansiysk, Russia — both in 2009.

This is the first time that a junior water polo event has seen both gender categories playing at the same venue at the same time. We will wade through 118 matches in 10 days with some days throwing up 16 matches, keeping athletes and officials busy.

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