USA vs Russia and Canada vs Hungary in the semifinals!
4th Game Day in the Super Final of the World League and the quarterfinals of the tournament held in Athens took place. After great Water Polo battles the pairs of semifinals of the tournament emerged.
15:00 GREECE - JAPAN
16:45 SPAIN - KAZAKHSTAN
18:30 RUSSIA - USA
20:15 HUNGARY - CANADA
REVIEW (GAME DAY 4):
HUNGARY - SPAIN
The first great game was between Hungary and Spain, in a classic European battle. At the Athens Olympic Sports Complex, Hungary and Spain fought hard to reach the semifinals. It was a closed game with both teams chasing each other.
In the third period, Hungary made the leap, finding offensive solutions and with Rita Keszthelyi in a great day, it came to lead 7-4. The Spaniards of Miki Oca reduced the score to 7-6, but with an outburst again Hungary went even by 10-6 5.41 before the end and reached the win. Spain simply reduced the score to 10-8 in the final two minutes.
MVP of the game was Hungarian Goalie Alda Magyari. First scorers of the game were Rita Keszthelyi (HUN), Tarrago (ESP) and Anna Espar (ESP) with three goals each one of them.
Hungary will face Canada at the semifinals!
HUNGARY - SPAIN 10-8
Periods: 3-3, 3-1, 2-2, 2-2
HUNGARY (Attilla Biro): Magyari, Szilagyi 1, Valyi, Gurisatti 1, Szucs, Parkes, Illes, Keszthelyi 3, Leimeter 2, Gyongyossy 1, Rybanska, Garda 2, Kaso
SPAIN (Miki Oca): Ester, Bach, Espar 3, Ortiz 1, Tarrago 3, Gonzalez, Espar, Pena, Forca 1, Crespi, Garcia, Leiton, Sanchez
Alda Magyari (Hungarian goalkeeper and MVP of the game):
"We came to Athens to get a medal. We were waiting for this victory. It was a very important step in the run-up to the Olympics. It gives us confidence and self-confidence. To qualify for the semi-finals we will have to correct some mistakes we made today. We are a better team than Canada and we have to prove it in the water."
Attila Biro (Hungary coach):
"We made a very good appearance against the European champions. We played excellent defense, much better than in the previous two games where we conceded many goals. I am very happy with the performance and the result. We now have the opportunity to claim a medal. If we play like today we can get the victory in the next two matches and win the gold medal".
Miki Oca (Spain coach):
"Hungary was better than us and won fairly. Unfortunately, we suffered two consecutive defeats. It is not something that surprised us, since we lost to US and today to Hungary, a very good team. When you play against Hungary the defeat is not a surprise. We need to improve a lot of things to be ready for the Olympics".
CANADA - KAZAKHSTAN
Second quarterfinal on Thursday in Athens for the Super Final of the World League with Canada confirming the predictions.
David Paradelo's team faced Kazakhstan and with an impressive performance managed to qualify for the semifinals of the tournament. Canada now has two chances to win a medal at the event and gain confidence for the upcoming Tokyo Olympics.
From the first eight minutes of the game, Canada got a safe difference in score and was not threatened until the end of the match, celebrating the entrance to the semifinals (11-3).
MVP and first scorer (3) of the game was Hayley McKelvey (CAN).
Canada will face Hungary at the semifinals!
CANADA - KAZAKHSTAN 11 - 3
Periods: 5-0, 1-1, 1-1, 4-1
CANADA (Paradelo David): Vulpisi, McKee, Crevier 1, Wright 1, Amorosa 1, Sohi 1, Bekhazi 3, Lemay-Lavoie 1, McKelvey 3, Christmas, Paul, La Roche, Wright
KAZAKHSTAN (Naurazbekov Marat): Zharkimbayeva, Pochinok, Glukhova, Turova 1, Yeremina, Roga 2, Novikova, Murayeva, Shapovalova, Khritankova, Anosova, Murataliyeva, Martynenko
The captain of Canada, Emma Wright , claimed that her team can reach the final of the tournament. Her statements are as follows:
"This is the second time that we will play against the Hungarian team in a few days. It is difficult to face the same team twice in the same tournament. I think we are ready to qualify for the final. The semi-final is a final for us".
Despite the defeat, the coach of Kazakhstan, Marat Naurasbekov, was satisfied with the appearance of his girls and explains to the Press Office of the event the problems he faces in building a competitive team.
"I am satisfied with the effort of the girls. We need to put things in perspective. We face many problems in our preparation. In Kazakhstan, a country of enormous size, kilometers are torturous. There is only one team participating in the Russian Women's Water Polo Championship. This team also forms the National Team of the country. The struggles we give are minimal".
JAPAN - USA
The polynomial team of World League over the years took another step to the top. The USA overcame the obstacle of Japan in the quarterfinals and will face Russia - Greece in the semifinal.
Adam Krikorian's team proved to be the favorite once again and remains undefeated in the tournament, just like Canada.
From the beginning the USA took the lead and reached a comfortable victory over Japan with a score of 6-20. MVP and best scorer of the game was Margaret Steffens who scored 4 goals.
JAPAN - USA 6-20
Periods: 1-4, 1-6, 1-6, 3-4.
JAPAN (Motomiya Makihiro): Miura, Arima 2, Inaba 1, Ura 1, Iwano, Koide, Hashida, Nizawa, Shitara, Kawaguchi 1, Nishiyama, Kudo 1, Shioya
USA (Krikorian Adam): Johnson, Musselman 3, Seidemann 2, Fattal 1, Hauschild 2, Steffens 4, Haralabidis 2, Raney 2, Fischer, Gilchrist, Fischer 2, Williams 2, Longan.
The statement of USA coach Adam Krikorian caused a sensation. Without question wanted to thank the organizers for the impressive result of the organizational success of the games in a short period of time.
"I thank the organizers. What they achieved was great. Congratulations to the Swimming Federation of Greece and to those who worked feverishly. In a short time they achieved a wonderful result. I especially thank the people in the green and orange T-shirts (employees and volunteers) who were always by our side," said the wonderful and experienced, Armenian-born US coach.
The most experienced Japanese player, the goalkeeper Ricaco Miura , said:
"We were given the opportunity to play against the best team in the world and we are very pleased with our presence. Our goal is to improve from race to race. The Olympic Games are coming to our homeland, Tokyo. There, the initial goal is to beat China in our group and qualify for the quarterfinals of the tournament."
RUSSIA - GREECE
Exciting was the game of Russia with the host country Greece for the last quarterfinal of the Super Final of the World League.
It was one of the most quality and stressful games of the tournament, with the lead constantly changing hands. Greece of Theo Lorantos entered the last period by 8-7 as Nicole Eleftheriadou scored two consecutive goals, while the goalkeeper Ioanna Stamatopoulou saved a penalty in the 3rd period.
In the last eight minutes of the match, the derby continued with Russia scoring the equalizer to 8-8. From there, both teams missed important goal opportunities and the game was led to penalties.
There, the excellent Anna Karnaukh saved the penalty of Eleftheriadou while Golovina saved the one from Plevritou V. and Russia took the victory with a total score of 12-10.
Russia will face the USA in the semifinals of the tournament. The Russians scored too many times in the counterattack. The MVP of the match was the Greek goalkeeper Ioanna Stamatopoulou who was celebrating her birthday tonight.
Greece will compete against Japan for positions 5-8.
RUSSIA - GREECE 12-10 (8-8 regular time)
Periods: 2-3, 4-3, 1-2, 1-0 (Penalties 4-2)
RUSSIA (Aleksander Gaidukov): Golovina, Prokofyeva, Karimova 1, Vakhitoba, Fedotova, Serzhatova 1, Simanovich 1, Timofeeva 1, Soboleva, Ivanova 1, Glyzina 1, Karnaukh.
GREECE (Theo Lorantos): Stamatopoulou, Tsoukala 3, Tricha, Eleftheriadou 3, Plevritou Margarita 1, Xenaki, Ninou 1, Patra, Siouti, Plevritou Vasiliki, Plevritou Eleftheria, Myriokefalitaki, Sotireli.
Theo Lorantos (Greece coach):
"Mistakes were made and we paid for them. We should not have conceded these goals in the opponent's counterattack. As long as I am on the bench of the National team we have never conceded three goals against in counterattack. Another key reason that did not allow us to proceed is the fact that the other teams have been working hard for months to participate in the Olympics, with a series of many and difficult friendly games, while we have not. Elena Xenaki was ill and had stomach problems since the morning. Overall I am happy with the image of the team. We have proved that we are equal to teams that express the foam of the sport. Sometimes you gain more things from some defeats."
Andrei Belofastov (Russian assistant coach):
"It was an ambiguous and nice game. Greece played very well and made it difficult for us. The game was nervous, many mistakes were made, in the end we had several chances to win when we played three times with an extra man,. It is a great pleasure for us to play tomorrow in the semifinal against the best team in the world, the United States. It will be a great experience for the girls ".
15:00 GREECE - JAPAN
16:45 SPAIN - KAZAKHSTAN
18:30 RUSSIA - USA
20:15 HUNGARY - CANADA