Greece piles the pressure on Montenegro

London 2012 Water Polo

Edmonton (April 3) - Greece nearly threw a spanner into the works when it came amazingly close to upsetting Montenegro on day three of the Olympic Games Qualification Tournament for men at the Kinsmen Sports Centre here today. Montenegro, playing in Group A, is the raging favourite and expected to dominate the event. Greece disagreed, levelled the game twice in the final and had the final shot of the match on extra-man advantage and sent the ball wide of the post.

It was an amazing game in which the potent firepower of Montenegro was kept in the bunker, mainly through Greece’s stoic defence. Twice in the dying minutes Greece repelled the Montenegro assault, showing that it is a chance come Friday’s all-important quarterfinals, which will decide the final four in London. Montenegro led 2-1, 4-2 and 6-4 at the breaks in a game where Mladan JANOVIC (MNE) and Christos AFROUDAKIS (GRE) excelled with three goals each. Montenegro has won three times and for Greece it was a second one-goal loss in three outings.

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Romania heads Greece in see-sawing encounter

London 2012 Water Polo

Edmonton (April 2) - Romania set its sights firmly on a trip to London after a scintillating 10-9 victory over Greece on day two of the Olympic Games Qualification Tournament for men at the Kinsmen Sports Centre here today. In the “Group of Death” — Group A — Romania made up for a first-day loss while Greece has a first loss after a big start on day one.

The thriller saw both teams take the lead four times. The match was levelled at 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8 and 9 with the winning goal coming just inside the final three minutes. It was edge-of-your-seat stuff with the over-productive Cosmin RADU claiming four goals for the Romanians and Christos AFROUDAKIS with three for the Greeks. The real story will unfold on quarter-final day on Friday but this was edgy play, high-powered and just the sort of action both teams crave in Olympic year.

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Germany strikes major blow in hunt for Olympic berth

London 2012 Water Polo

Edmonton (April 1) - The hunt is on for the final four places at the London Olympic Games and 11 men’s teams are competing for the honour at the Olympic Games Qualification Tournament in Edmonton, Canada. In the massive Kinsmen Centre, host to the 1978 Commonwealth Games for aquatics, competition started in earnest with the loss of one team missing. Venezuela was a late withdrawal through travel difficulties, meaning Canada was robbed of its opening-day clash. However, Germany and Romania provided the best competition of the day in the tough Group A. There is much hype over who will flow through to the Olympics with Group A containing many top contenders.

Germany seemed to have control of much of the match against Romania but allowed Romania to level in the third and get ahead early in the fourth before retaking the lead at 9-8 with 3:37 remaining in the game. Both teams took timeouts but it was Romania who scored to level at 11 seconds on the clock. Germany was not dejected and scored the winner with five second left. Both goals were scored off deflections and German captain Marc Politze was involved in both, first as the defender and then as the scorer of the last goal. In other Group A games, European No 2 Montenegro dispensed with the Netherlands 12-6 and Greece crushed the Former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia 12-2.

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Promising performances at Japan's Junior Olympic Cup

Federations News

The 34th Junior Olympic Cup, a famous aquatics event organised by the Japanese Olympic Committee (JOC), concluded on a successful note at the Tokyo-Tatsumi International Swimming Center (T-TISC) on March 30, 2012 in Tokyo (JPN). The four-day competition gathered 3'638 junior swimmers (1'907 boys and 1'731 girls) from 887 clubs from all over Japan to compete in 25m events.

A new national record, five high school records, one junior high school record, two elementary school records and 19 meet records were set at the event. Among girls, Miki Uchida established a new national record in the 50m freestyle (24.58). She is a member of Itoman Swimming School Tatebayashi. Among boys, Yusuke Kudo broke the high school record in both the 50m and 100m backstroke, posting 23.97 and 51.70, respectively. The young talent swims at WaterMates Swim Club. Both Uchida and Kudo were designated Swimmer of the Cup. The Itoman Swimming School won the combined title of the Cup.

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Brazil in top shape at South American Swimming Championships

Federations News

Brazil won 72 medals at the South American Swimming Championships taking place in Belem (BRA) from March 11-25, 2012. The biennial aquatics championships bring together all nations from the CONSANAT, the South American Swimming Confederation tom compete in Swimming, Diving, Synchronised Swimming, Water Polo and Open Water Swimming.   

Brazilians swimmers captured 51 medals (26 gold, 19 silver and six bronze medals). Home hero Cesar Cielo brought more gold to his name, winning five events and posting this season's best time in the 50m butterfly: 23s26.

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