Super Final 2012 (Men): Croatia beats Spain to clinch first World League title
KAZAKHSTAN, Almaty (June 17) – Water polo at its prime: Croatia won a thrilling final against Spain in a penalty shootout; eleven rounds were needed to decide the title which finally went to Croatia, for the first time in World League history. Italy came third after a narrow win over USA, the hosts celebrated Kazakhstan‘s best ever placement in any FINA competition as they clinched the fifth position ahead of China, and the Australians found some consolation in their victory against Brazil.
The final day’s action was attended by FINA President Dr. Julio C. Maglione and Dariga Nazarbayeva, Chairperson of the Social and Development Committee of the Kazakh Parliament, daughter of the country’s President, Nursultan Nazarbayev. The FINA President and Mrs Nazarbayeva presented the gold medals to the victorious Croatian players at the end of the event which was very well organised, thanks to the tremendous efforts by the Kazakh Swimming Federation.
Super Final 2012 (Men): Spain upsets Italy, meets Croatia in final
KAZAKHSTAN, Almaty (June 16) – World champion Italy couldn’t make it to the final this time: they were pushed aside by Mediterranean arch rivals Spain in a game decided by the penalties. The other semi final saw Croatia coming from behind to beat the U.S., thanks to Sandro Sukno’s hat-trick in the fourth period. For the lower places Kazakhstan scored a bit surprising win over Australia, while China took the upper hand in the last quarter against Brazil.
Super Final 2012 (Men): Croatia, Italy, Spain and USA advance to semis
In the pool, only one game offered the usual excitement: the Australians challenged the Americans towards the end of the game, but the USA proved too strong. Italy and Spain both scored a rather easy victory and will face each other in the semis. Croatia had some tough moments in the first half against the hosts, but the third period was decisive – their semi final against the USA will be a mouthwatering encounter, too.
Super Final 2012 (Men): Italy and Croatia top respective groups
KAZAKHSTAN, Almaty (June 14) – The last day of the group stage was opened by a scoring festival, courtesy of Croatia, then came three thrillers offering tremendous excitements – a great way to turn into the knock-out phase. Besides Croatia, Italy clinched the top spot of their respective group after a nailbiter against the U.S. – the Americans settled for the second place here –, Spain came second in the other quartet after bouncing back from 1-4 against Australia. To the sorrow of hundreds, the locals lost their second consecutive penalty shootout, this time to China.
Riccione 2012, Diving: "Hat-trick" but not just for the Magic Six!
Amongst all the diving stars at the 14th FINA World Masters Championships in Riccione six divers managed to secure a wonderful three victories each in their respective events but in addition to their hat-trick is another namely: the Iranian, Hassan Lotfi, the Indian Rajendra Kanphade and the Italian Ugo Sansonetti. The Italian was the oldest competitor in the diving events and was victorious in the 1m Springboard event securing a total of 118.50 points while competing in the 90-94 years age-group. The 93 year-old former farmer who had spent many years in Costa Rica is now back in his homeland and is coached by Italian diving legend Klaus Dibiasi. Back in February he had broken his ankle but fortunately he got the green light from his doctor to compete in the Championships on the Adriatic coast of Italy. He had previously also held 10 World Masters records in athletics in the 200m, 400m and 800m too. His 10 children, 25 grandchildren and five great grandchildren were all truly proud of him.
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