Olga Kamardina, FINA Correspondent in Russia

FINA Men’s World League Super Final kicked off today at the Aquatic Palace of Ruza, Russian Federation, to see eight national teams competing for the prestigious trophy within the next 5 days.

Entering their first big event after the 2016 Olympics in Rio, water polo powers will definitely take this floor to stage a dress rehearsal for the FINA World Championship in Budapest.

The competition format is quite traditional as 8 competitors are divided into 2 groups with Group A a little bit stronger than Group B. The Group A sees Pan-American reigning champion, 2016 WL Super-final runner-up the team of the USA, all-round crown Serbia, Kazakhstan and Italy. Group B, respectively, is presented by the 2017 World League Intercontinental tournament winner Australia, Olympic silver holder Croatia, Japan, and host Russia. So, the first 3 days of the event features a round-robin tournament, after which cross-over match-ups will be held to decide the semi-finalists en route to the medal clashes.

Croatia and Japan have had the honor of raising the curtain on a competition. Then, Serbia and Italy got their first wins, followed by the host Russia, staging a big fight against Australia.

FINA Men’s Water Polo World League Super Final 2017

Results Summary / Day 1 20 June, 2017

Game 1. CRO Croatia vs. JPN Japan 13-5 (4-2, 3-0, 1-2, 5-1)

Game 2. SRB Serbia vs. KAZ Kazakhstan 15-7 (3-0, 6-4, 3-2, 3-1)

Game 4. USA United States of America – ITA Italy 7-9 (1-0, 2-0, 2-3, 0-2, penalty shoot-out 2-4)

Game 3. AUS Australia – RUS Russian Federation 5-11 (2-2, 1-2, 1-4, 1-3)

Progress points after Competition Day 1:

Group A: Croatia 3, Russia 3, Australia 0, Japan 0.

Group B: Serbia 3, Italy 2, USA 1, Kazakhstan 0.