Dean Bauer, FINA Press Correspondent in Croatia

Game 53, 9:00, places 17-18, South Africa - New Zealand, 8-15
Quarters: 1-3, 1-3, 3-4, 3-5
Referees: Anlong Meng (China) and Damir Temyrkhanov (Kazakhstan).

SOUTH AFRICA: Keegan Clark, Michael Stewart, Tristan Fin, Caleb Simpson 1, Wanye Phillips, Sven Van Zyl 2, Malcolm Mc Callum,  Mathew Hamilton 4, Keagan Aiken,  Sebastian Bidoli 1, Thomas, Eichner.
Coach: Andrew Stewart.
NEW ZEALAND: Bae Fountain, Cayne Dew 6, Jake Morris, Richard Sneddon 3, Troy Armstrong 1, Dominic Rankin-Chitar, Jake Blundell, Nick Stankovich 5, Nick Paterson, Cooper Stewart, Christopher Downe.
Coach: Goran Sablic.    
South Africa: 2 for 5
New Zealand: 7 for 11

South Africa:-
New Zealand: -
Two players were decisive in the team of New Zealand to overcome a weak squad of South Africa. Cayne Dew scored 6 goals and Nick Stankovich netted 5 to ensure the 17th place for their country in these Championships.
Game 54, 10:20, places 15-16, China – Kazakhstan, 7-13
Quarters: 2-4, 1-4, 2-2, 2-3
Referees: Ayman Haroun (Egypt) and Stephen O'Brien (Ireland).

CHINA: Jun Jing Wang, Bei Yi Wang 2, Jin Peng Zhang, Ying Yi Gao 2, Wei Tang 1, Yi Lu 2, Wen Jian Luo, Bo Ren She, Ding Song Shen, Chi Liao, Xue Lin Wu.
Coach: Ling Jun Mao
KAZAKHSTAN: Vladislav Kolesnik, Stanislav Shvedov 2, Zhandos Akhamaev, Vitaliy Tarabanko, Vadim Kireev, Sergey Bogomolov 2, Klimentiy Zlobin, Olzhas Satpayev 1, Ruslan Akhmetov 4, Sultan Shonzhigitov 4, Paval Lipilin.
Coach: Dmitriy Khodzinskiy
China:  2 for 8
Kazakhstan: 3 for 9

China: 1 for 1
Kazakhstan:  1 for 1
Kazakhstan has invested more effort in the match and comfortably defeated the team of China for the 15th place in the competition.

Game 55, 11:40, places 13-14, Brazil – Egypt, 15-12
Quarters: 4-4, 2-3, 1-3, 8-2
Referees: Josko Prancic (Croatia), Petar Abramovic (Montenegro)

BRASIL: Joao Fernandez, Vinicius Henrique Pessin 2, Luis Ricardo Silva 3, Gabriel Poci 2, Fabricio Lacerda, Enrico de Munno, Rafael Real 6, Alexandre Kerkis, Marcos Paolo Pedroso 1, Mateus Stellet 1, Alexandre Mendes.
Coach: Angelo Koelho
EGYPT: Omar Hariry, Abdallah Elsherbiny, Youssif Ali, Mohamed Elbehary 3, Karim Kassem 1, Karim Saleh 1, Ahmed Ayman 3, Mohanad Elashqr 1, Ahmed Khled, Saifelden Hesham 3, Marawan Reda.
Coach: Arsharaf  Mansour
Brazil: 6 for 9
Egypt: 4 for 8

Brazil: 1 for 1
Egypt: -

Brazil has long struggled with Egypt, but in the end, however, convincingly won and took the 13th place. Until the last period, the entire Brazilian team played for its top scorer Rafael Real, who had a challenging day. Real has sent as many as 14 shots, including one penalty, and scored “only” 6 goals. In total, Real had 44 goals at the  FINA World Youth World Championships, but Spanish Alvaro Granados with one more match to play has an additional opportunity to become the best scorer of the Podgorica tournament.

Game 56, 13:00, places 11-12, Japan – Canada, 15-11
Quarters: 3-0, 3-4, 4-5, 5-2
Referees: Marco Da Silva (Brazil) and Vladimir Golikov (Russia)

JAPAN: Towa Nishimura, Yuto Abo 1, Shimpel Omoto, Harukirario Koppu 2, Fuya Kawamoto, Yuki Takada, Kaname Tanaka 2, Toi Suzuki 2, Ikkei Nitta 1, Yusuke Inaba 7, Tobias Martenes.
Coach: Takahisa Minami
CANADA: Aleksa StaniC, Gareth Jones, Alexis Reiher, Harrison Henning 1, Benjamin Lemay-Lavoie 3, Mark Spooner, Reuel D'Souza 5, Jake Morris, Bogdan DjerkoviC 2, Brody McKnight.
Coach: Andrew Muir
Japan:  2 for 5
Canada: 3 for 6

Japan:  2 for 2
Canada: -

Although they only finished 11th, the Japanese team was a pleasant surprise of the tournament. They caused a lot of problems to many favourite teams with a much longer tradition of water polo, like Hungary, Australia and USA. Themselves favourite against Canada, Japanese players did not disappoint and from the first period it was clear that they were in the water to win. Canadians were able to equalise on several occasions, but in the last period of the match Japan played much better than Canada and settled the final outcome.

Game 58, 17:00, places 5-8, Greece – Australia, 13-9
Quarters: 6-1, 2-1, 2-5, 3-2
Referees: Ivan Rakovic (Serbia) and Humberto Navarro (USA)

GREECE: Adamanttios Mantis,  Konstantinos Chondrokolikis 2, Nikolaos Gardikas 3, Konastantinos Kakaris, Dimitrios Nikolaidis 3, Alexandros Papanastrasiou 2, Grigorios Giannopoulos 2 , Nikolaos Delagrammatikas, Konstantinos Gkiouvetsis 1, Georgios Gkikas, Dimitrios Kourouvanis.
Coach: Theodoros Chatzitheodorou
AUSTRALIA: Damian Williams,Keenan Marsden 3,  Charles Negus, Nicholas Elphick 3, Timothy Putt, Lachalan Vos, Samuel Nangle, Chaz Poot 2, Jed Thompson 1,  Jack Marshall, Nicholas Porter.
Coach: Andrei Kovalenko
Greece:  3 for 10
Australia: 3 for 9

Greece:   3 for 3
Australia:  1 for 1
With very decisive actions (and goals) in the first period, Greece was able to ensure triumph against a very slow Australian team. The first goal of the game only happened after four minutes, but then Hellenic players successfully hit the Australian net three times in one minute! Until the end of the first quarter, Greece scored three more goals so after a 6-0 lead it was obvious who would be the winner. In the beginning of the third period, Australia has managed to reduce the difference to 7-9, but Greeks regained control of the game and easily triumphed by 13-9.


Game 59, 18:20, places 5-8, Russia – Serbia, 7-13
Quarters: 1-5, 4-4, 2-2, 0-2
Referees: Alberto Rovida (Italy) and Andrej Laginja (Slovenia).

RUSSIA: Vladimir Andreev, Bogdan Melentev 3, Oleg Kucherenko, Emil Zinnurov 3, Kirill Semenov, Danill Pronin, Farkhad Salimov, Konstantin Sheikin 1, Nikita Krug, Timur Shaikhutdinov, Dmitrii Trusov.
Coach: Alexander Eryshov
SERBIA: Stefan Todorovski,  Aleksandar Mirkovic 2, Vladan Mitrovic 1, Nikola Lukic , Luka Bosic 2, Petar Velikic 2, Djorđe Stanic 1, Petar Tomic 1, Marko Jankovic 3, Kristijan Sulc 1, Milan Bulajic.
Coach: Zoran Milinović
Russia: 6 for 9
Serbia:  4 for 10

Russia:   -
Serbia:  1 for 1
The rival of Greece in the match for fifth place of this World Championships in Podgorica will be team of Serbia. The Balkan team began the match in a very strong way and quickly gained a huge advantage. By the end of the game, Serbia has maintained a difference and Russia just waited for the end of the encounter as soon as possible.


Game 60, 19:40, semi-finals, Hungary – Croatia, 17-21
Quarters: 6-6, 4-6, 4-6, 3-3
Referees: Diego Garibaldi (Argentina), Haldun Toygarli (Turska)

HUNGARY: Gabor Leposa, Larand Zernvary, Balazs Kosa 1, Viktor Vadovics 5, Abel Lukacs, Peter Sugar, Gergo Fekete 1, Andras Teleki, Adam Nagy 6, Gergely Burian, Marc Banyai. 3 1
Coach: Gyorgy Horkai
CROATIA: Luka Podrug, Branimir Herceg 2, Karlo Krekovic, Marko Valecic, Zvonimir Butic 3, Jacob Mercep 5, Duje Pejkovic 3, Franko Lazic 4, Lovro Paparic 2, Maias Biljaka 2, Petar Bratim.
Coach: Josko Krekovic       
Hungary:  9 for 18
Croatia: 8 for 10

Hungary:    -
Croatia:  1 for 1
Croatian water polo has two big finals this summer! After the senior team of Croatia played the Olympic final in Rio de Janeiro, the young (players up to 18 years old) squad will play on this Saturday evening (21:00 CET) for the gold medal at these World Championships in Montenegro. The young “Barracudas” displayed their best performance so far in the tournament and defeated Hungary by a four-goal difference. A brilliant performance in man-up situations (8 in 10), in combination with a superb defence from the entire team (namely goalkeeper Luka Podrug), gave Croatia more than deserved victory. Only during the first quarter both teams were tied. From this period we noticed one and only Hungarian lead by more than one goal (5-3), exactly 2.28 before the end of the first period. But, by the end of the quarter, the situation was again balanced (6-6). Then started a small Croatian water polo rhapsody: a very aggressive defence, with blocks, and with great goalkeeper Luka Podrug making the Magyars' life quite complicated. On the other hand, extremely effective and fast Croatian attack with lucid solutions that Hungary could not answer. Three minutes before the end of the second period, young “Barracudas” (nickname of Croatian water polo team) got for the first time a three-goal advantage (11-8), later increased  to 12-8. Butic, Paparic, left-handed Biljaka and Croatian top-scorer Pejkovic rapidly hit the Hungarian net. Gyorgy Horkai, the Hungarian coach, made everything possible, even changing the goalkeeper, but without fruitful results. During the third and fourth period Croatia was always in the lead by an advantage of 3-4 goals.
“Hungarians were a difficult opponent, but we're determined to win from the beginning of the game. In the end I had to prepare even a second goalkeeper, just in case, because we had a lot of players with three personal fouls. In the final there are no favourites. Montenegro play in front of their audience, but we will give our best to win gold,” said Josko Krekovic, the Croatian Head coach.
Hungary was not at the desired level in the semi-final. The defence absolutely failed, as well as man-up performance, so the result could not be better. “We did not play well. Congratulations to Croatia for their deserved victory,” said Peter Sugar from Hungary.


Game 61, 21:00, semi-finals, Montenegro – Italy, 11-10
Quarters: 4-3, 3-2, 2-3, 2-2
Referees: Joan Colominas (Spain), George Polychronopoulos (Greece).
MONTENEGRO: Petar Tesanovic, Branko Franeta 1, Savo Cetkovic 1, Nicolas Saveljic, Dusan Matkovic, Danilo Dragovic, Aleksa Ukropina, 3 Petar Mijuskovic, Djuro Radovic 6, Dusan Banićevic, Miloš Krivokapic.
Coach: Veljko Uskokovic.
ITALY: Gianmaco Nicosia, Gaetano Baviera 1, Filippo Gavazzi 1, Alessio Navarra 1, Mario Guidi, Antonio Maccioni 2, Federico Piombo 1, Eddardo Manzi 3, Ettore Novara, Massimo Di Martire 1, Francesco De Michelis.
Coach: Cosimino Di Cecca.
Montenegro:  2 for 6
Italy:  2 for 9

Montenegro:    -
Italy:  -
In front of about 2.000 spectators at the pool Moraca in Podgorica, the team of Montenegro in an exciting and dramatic semi-final against Italy, won by a tangential 11-10 and got the right to play the Saturday evening final for the world crown against Croatia. Young “Ajkula” (nickname of Montenegro team, meaning “sharks”), have provided in most of the match a great defensive play (namely Montenegrin goalkeeper Petar Tesanovic who had 12 saves). With only 3 seconds before the end he saved a two-metre attempt by Gaetano Baviere - it was in a man-up situation and the last chance for Italy to level the score at 11-11. The very first minutes of the match went to Italy, but after an Italian lead (2-0), the host team started to play better and quickly imposed its style. Djuro Radovic from Montenegro was a great challenge for the Italian defence and his six goals by the middle of third period gave a precious lead to Montenegro (9-5). It seemed then that the winner was determined, but the Italians are very persistent. For almost eight minutes, Montenegro did not score a single goal, so Italy, at 4.49 minutes before the end of the match, managed to equalise (9-9). However, in the following action, Aleksa Ukropina brings a new home team lead (10-9) and with a minute and a half before the end Sava Cetkovic scored a fantastic goal (11-9). However, Antonio Maccioni, with 44 seconds before the end, hit the Montenegrin net (11-10) for additional drama in last seconds of the match. The last attack went to Italy, they hit a goal post twice, then 10 seconds before the end Italy has a man-up situation, but Montenegro's goalie made a brilliant save, ensuring the victory and the final for Montenegro!
“This is not a small thing, to play a World Championships final. I congratulate my players on a great fighting spirit and deserved victory. Also, I would like to thank the fans too for their great support in difficult periods of the game. I expect a great fight and a tough game against Croatia, but I hope in our success and victory in front of our fans,” said national Head coach of Montenegro, Veljko Uskokovic.
Italian Head coach Cosimino Di Cecca was disappointed with the result: “We didn't play a good game, we didn't play as we were prepared to and team of Montenegro knew how to take advantage of this. However, we were able to come back, but we did not have the strength to overturn the result. Congratulations to Montenegro”.