SUPER FINAL – SPAIN EDGES OUT WORLD CHAMPION CROATIA IN SHOOTOUT

The FINA Men’s Water Polo World League Super Final 2018 is currently taking place in Budapest, Hungary, until Saturday June 23.

Montenegro and the USA are the only two sides in the field standing with a clean sheet. On Day 2, the Montenegrins had a big win over host Hungary, coming from 7-9 down to clinch the match with 12-9, while the Americans beat Kazakhstan with ease. Spain recovered from the opening day’s defeat against the US and managed to beat World champions Croatia in a penalty shootout. Australia did a splendid job against Japan, thanks to the outstanding efforts of Aaron Younger who netted 6 goals.

In the first game of the second tournament day, the Aussies beat Japan with ease. Australia took a 4-1 lead in the opening period – with a hat-trick from Younger – and managed to maintain a 3-4 goals lead throughout the game, Japan never had the chance to earn any point this afternoon.

The second game of the second day brought the first penalty shootout of the tourney as Croatia managed to force the game into a shootout after a late equaliser. With a great spell in the second period Spain rushed ahead and maintained its lead for most of the game but were unable to score in the last period and that cost them one point – but at least they won in the shootout as their goalie Dani Lopez had two stops.

Montenegro and Hungary played a magnificent match which was really entertaining for three periods, at least for the home fans – but the fourth period saw only Montenegrin goals while the Hungarian ran out of ideas. They led 7-9 with 2:54 to go in the third – but they were unable to score any more in the game while their rivals produced a 5-0 rush, won the match and is set to win the group.

FINA Men’s Water Polo World League Super Final 2018
credit: FINA

The closing match of the day brought less excitements: apart from a weaker spell early in the second period, the US side took the game under firm control against Kazakhstan and decided the outcome by the end of the third period as they netted three goals in 1:43 minutes to go 8-2 up.

You can read detailed match reports here and today’s (DAY 3) report will be availabe this evening on FINA website.

Provisional Standings

Group A: 1. Montenegro 6, 2. Hungary 3, 3. Australia 3, 4. Japan 0

Group B: 1. United States 6, 2. Croatia 4, 3. Spain 2, 3. Kazakhstan 0

FINA

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