FINA Communication Department

World champions Croatia beat Russia in Zadar (CRO) on the opening game of the European preliminaries of the FINA Men's Water Polo World League 2018, while Olympic champions and World League title holders Serbia gave no chance to Romania in Zrenjanin (SRB).

Group A's Serbia stamped their authority right from the first round and won easily 12-3, despite Romania fighting until the end (4-1, 2-0, 4-1, 2-1).

Croatia scored 14 times against 4 for the Russians (3-0, 3-1, 4-1, 4-2) for the first game of group B.

In group C's game, Spain defeated the Dutch 9-5 in Malaga (ESP), leading throughout most of the game with some doubts in the first and third quarters (2-1, 3-1, 1-2, 3-1). The Dutch however did display a good defence and strong concentration until the end.

Provisional ranking

Group A: SRB 3 pts; ROU 0 pt; MNE 0 pt
Group B: CRO 3pts; RUS 0 pt; GER 0 pt
GROUP C: ESP 3 pts; NED 0 pt; HUN 0 pt

The second round of the European prelims will be played on December 12. Serbia will encountet their neighbours from Montenegro, Germany will play its first game against Russia and the Netherlands will face World Championships runner-up Hungary.