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WP Juniors (W), Day 2: USA, Russia and Australia lead after second win

FINA World Junior Water Polo Championships

Volos (Greece), 20 August - In a very exciting day in Volos, all the seven games were really interesting with many beautiful goals, turnovers, unexpected results and the first draw. The match of this second day was the last one, with Greece celebrating a crucial victory against Spain in front of the Hellenic supporters. Another highlight was the second victory of the USA in the tournament (this time against Italy), making the North Americans a strong contender for the quarterfinals. Russia and Australia also assured their second win in Volos.

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WP Juniors (W), Day 1: No surprises in the initial day in Volos

FINA World Junior Water Polo Championships

Volos (Greece) 19 August – The first day of the Championships in Volos (GRE) was marked by the victories of the strongest teams of the tournament. In all the seven matches, the squads with more ambitions proved their superiority and sent a strong signal for the remaining of the event: moreover, their comfortable win allowed the respective coaches to use all their players, thus giving them a “taste” of what is still to come.

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FINA in mourning - Water polo legend Dezso Gyarmati passed away

FINA Family

Dezso GyarmatiLegendary water polo player and coach Dezso Gyarmati has died at the age of 86. One of the best players the game ever seen and in fact the most decorated in history. Till date he is the only player who earned five Olympic medals during his magnificent career: three of them were gold (1952, 1956, 1964), one silver (1948) and one bronze (1960).

The left-handed genius could play in all positions of the field. Known for his fearless approach in every game, he was able to decide the biggest clashes single-handedly. Gyarmati was the protagonist of water polo’s probably most famous match, the clash between Hungary and the USSR at the 1956 Olympics. Though remembered as the ‘Blood bath of Melbourne’ after the scenes of the dying minutes, it was team captain Gyarmati who opened the scoring and set up the other three goals Hungary netted while winning 4-0 en route to the title.

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WP Juniors (M), Day 7: Mission completed, Italy crowned as world champion

FINA World Junior Water Polo Championships

Italian team, new world champions - credit: LOC/Noemi KondorSzombathely (Hungary), 18 August – The Italian team completed its mission: after earning this age-group’s U18 world title and the U19 European triumph they added the U20 world crown to their tally. They proved their tactical and physical superiority against Croatia as well.

Serbia clinched the bronze medal by winning a great game against the hosts Hungarians.

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WP Juniors (M), Day 6: Italy faces off Croatia in the final

FINA World Junior Water Polo Championships

Szombathely (Hungary), 17 August – Just as in last year, at the Olympic Games, Italy meets Croatia in the final. Now the two nations’ best juniors clash for the U20 world title. So far, these youngsters are just dreaming of playing at the Olympics, but they have definitely taken the first steps towards the highest level. In the semis, Italy won a tough defensive game against Serbia while Croatia’s huge blasts sank Hungary’s ship to the sadness of one and half thousand fans around the pool.

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WP Juniors (M), Day 5: No surprise: Italy, Serbia, Croatia and Hungary reach the semis

FINA World Junior Water Polo Championships

SZOMBATHELY (Hungary), 16 August – Summer returned to the host city so everything was given to enjoy the very best of water polo: beautiful sunshine, a great outdoor pool in the green and packed stands around. The traditional powerhouses had all the answers for the challenges they faced in the quarters: the European giants didn’t leave the decision to the dying minutes against the teams from the other continents, Italy beat USA, Serbia kept Australia at bay and Croatia defeated Brazil. In the most thrilling match of the day Hungary managed to oust Spain.

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WP Juniors (M), Day 4: Brazil creates surprise, Australia wins a thriller

FINA World Junior Water Polo Championships

SZOMBATHELY (Hungary), 15 August – Brazil created a surprise by reaching the quarter finals. Australia also got on board after scoring the decisive goal against Russia in the very last second. Team USA and the host Hungarians enjoyed an easy ride en route to the best eight.

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WP Juniors (M), Day 3: Italy, Spain, Serbia and Croatia reach quarter finals

FINA World Junior Water Polo Championships

SZOMBATHELY (Hungary), 14 August – The last day of the preliminaries didn’t bring any surprise. Hungary missed the top spot in its group by a single goal, so hosts have to play for the quarter-finals while Italy enjoys a rest day. Just as the other group-winners: Spain, Serbia and Croatia.

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WP Juniors 2013 (M), Day 2: Hungary drew with Italy, scoring twice in last 45 seconds

FINA World Junior Water Polo Championships

SZOMBATHELY, Hungary (13 August) – Together with the dark clouds and gutsy winds, excitement also arrived to the venue, close to Hungary’s western border. Day 2 offered a series of twists and turns in almost every game. The highlight of the programme came last, Hungary earned a draw against Italy in a real thriller: the hosts came back from two goals down in the last 45 seconds!

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WP Juniors 2013 (M), Day 1: Wearing the white caps, win guaranteed

FINA World Junior Water Polo Championships

SZOMBATHELY, Hungary (August 12) – The opening day didn’t bring too much excitement. Interestingly, all eight matches saw the teams in the white caps winning – in facts these eight sides are the favourites for the top two places in their respective groups at this FINA World Men’s Junior Water Polo Championships.

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