Four teams qualify for quarterfinals on sixth day of FINA Junior Men’s World Championship

FINA World Junior Water Polo Championships

Almaty, September 9.— Greece, Spain, Australia and Montenegro have won through to the quarterfinals after preliminary-round action on the sixth day of the FINA Junior Men’s World Water Polo Championships.

Greece beat Mexico 17-8, Spain held off Egypt 15-11, Australia defeated Netherlands 15-10 and Montenegro beat host nation Kazakhstan 17-11.

Greece will play Croatia in the first quarterfinal on Thursday, followed by the Hungary-Montenegro clash, then the Serbia-Spain encounter and lastly the Italy-Australia match.

In earlier matches, Uzbekistan, with the redoubtable Kirill Rustamov scoring 11 goals to move his tournament tally to an incredible 38, beat South Africa 23-12 and China downed Iran 16-13. They now move into lower-ranked semifinals on Thursday.

Thursday’s schedule:

Round 13-18 Semifinals

50.    10:00        W41 UZB          v       W42 JPN

52.    11:20        W43 CAN         v       W44 CHN

Round 9-12 Semifinals    

53.    12:40        L45   KAZ          v       L46   MEX

54.    15:40        L47   EGY          v       L48   NED

Round 1-8 Quarterfinals 

55.    16:20        1A    CRO          v       W46 GRE

56.    17:40        1B    HUN          v       W45  MNE

57.    19:00        1C    SRB          v       W47  ESP

58.    20:20       1D    ITA            v       W48 AUS

Preliminary Round Match Reports:

Match 45: 18:20, MONTENEGRO 17 KAZAKHSTAN 11

Quarters: 3-1, 5-2, 4-5, 5-3

Referees: Radu Matache (ROU), Bianco (ITA).

Extra Man: MNE: 4/6. KAZ: 4/8.

Pens: Nil

MONTENEGRO: Aresenije Stanovic, Ugjesa Vukasovic (2), Dorde Bulatovic, Dusan Matkovic, Matija Brguljan (5), Nicolas Savejic (4), Danilo Adzic (3), Stefan Porobic, Filip Gardasevic (1), Janko Krivokapic (2), Milija Mandic. Head Coach: Zoran Maslovar.
KAZAKHSTAN: Aleksandr Lopatkin, Stanislav Shedov (2), Ruslan Akhmetov (1), Sultan, Shonzhigitov, Miras Aubakirov (1), Sergey Bogomolov, Maxim Zhardan (3), Egor Berbelyuk (3), Altay Altayev (1), Yulian Verdesh, Valeriy Shlemov. Head Coach: Nemanja Knezevic.

Match report:
Montenegro safely moved through to the quarterfinals with a hard-fought victory over the well-backed local team. Kazakhstan played well all match against a stronger opponent that was destined to go through to the top eight. Montenegro looked like taking a 12-7 lead into the final period until Egor Berbelyuk scored a rocket shot in the dying seconds for 12-8. That gave Kazakhstan the quarter 5-4, a big turnaround from the 2-5 second quarter. Montenegro safely moved through the final quarter and booked an appointment wit Hungary. For Montenegro, Matija Brguljan, Nicholas Saveljic and Danilo Adzic scored the majority of the goals. The home-town favourites were Maxim Zhardan and Berbelyuk, who scored all his three in the same quarter.

Picture: Russell McKinnon

Match 48: 17:00, NETHERLANDS 10 AUSTRALIA 15

Quarters: 2-5, 2-6, 3-1, 3-3

Referees: Sinisa Matijasevic (MNE), Jaume Teixido (ESP).

Extra Man: NED: 2/8. AUS: 6/9.

Pens: NED: 1/1

NETHERLANDS: Milan Koff, Kjeld Veenhuis (1), Guus  van Yperen (2), Sam Burg (1), Guus Wolswinkel, Tarik Scherrenburg (1), Harmen Muller (2), Pascal Janssen, Bilal Gbadamassi, Benjamin Hoepelman (3), Brent Hofmeyer. Head Coach: Jacob Spijker.
AUSTRALIA: Anthony Hrysanthos (1), Nicholas Brooks (4), Angus Lambie, Christopher Perrott, William Armstrong (4), Jordan Kremers-Taylor (3), William Mackay, Leo Hurley, Andrew Ford (2), James Smith (1), Sam Cocokios. Head Coach: Slobodan Macic.

Match Report:
Australia will take its place in the quarterfinals, playing Italy, after turning an 11-4 halftime score into 15-10. The Dutch came back at Australia, gaining several easy goals and putting pressure on the men from Down Under. Australia played nothing like what it did in the opening match against Serbia, showing that hard work during the week is paying off. Netherlands could have done better on attack, except for hesitancy at the top, while its centre forward were working tirelessly. Guus van Yjperren muscled in a shot just before the final break, giving the Dutch some hope. From 7-12 it became 9-12 at 5:21 before three straight Aussie goals had the match sewn up inside the final half-minute. Nicholas Brooks scored four from the left-hand-catch position and William Armstrong repeated the performance, also from the top. Jordan Kremers-Taylor made his presence known at the top, scoring three and. Benjamin Hoepelman was the best for Netherlands with two in the opening quarter and one in the second. Netherlands will now contest he classification 9-12 semifinals on Thursday.

Picture: Russell McKinnon

Match 47: 15:40, EGYPT 11 SPAIN 15

Quarters: 1-2, 4-5, 1-4, 5-4

Referees: Balazs Szekely (HUN), Nick Hodgers (AUS).

Extra Man: EGY: 2/6. ESP: 5/5.

Pens: EGY: 1/1.

EGYPT: Omara Osama, Moustafa Essmat (4), Aly Elaassar, Mahmoud Tarek, Ahmed Barakat (3), Abdelrahman Haroun (1), Ahmed Sherif (1), Hassan Haroun (1), Karim Mahmoud, Mahomed Mohsen (1), Marwan Ayman. Head Coach: Denes Lukacs.
SPAIN: Miguel Linares, Sergei Cabanas, Guillem Garcia (1), Marc Corbalan (3), Xavi Serra (2), Alvaro Granados (3), Borsa Fenoy (1), Agusti Pericas, Roger Tahull (4), Alesandro Bustos (1), Alfonso Lopez-Saez. Head Coach: Quim Colet.

Match report:
Spain moved into the quarterfinals, booking a face to face with Serbia, thanks to a rounded effort against Egypt. Spain tried many times to push the ball across cage to no effect, but at least tried various combinations ahead of the major matches. Egypt was resilient and attempted everything, probably playing its best match of the tournament. Moustafa Essmat three of his four goals in the tight second quarter and Ahmed Barakat came alive in the final eight minutes, netting three consecutive goals to drag his team back into the match from 8-14 to 11-14 with 2:20 left on the clock. For Spain, Roger Tahull scored twice in the second and third quarters and Alvaro Granados drilled three in the final quarter.

Picture: Russell McKinnon

Match 46: 12:40, GREECE 17 MEXICO 8

Quarters: 4-1, 3-3, 5-2, 5-2

Referees: Miodrag Stefanovic (SRB), Kunihiro Sato (JPN).

Extra Man: GRE: 1/1. MEX: 0/8.

Pens: GRE: 2/2.

GREECE: Emmanouil Zerdevas, Nikolaos Kopeliadis (1), Michail Sartzetakis (2), Angelos Foskolos (2), Stylianos Argyropoulos-Kanakkis (4), Dmitrios Nicolaidis (2), Panteleimon Kalogerakos, Grigorios Kapetanakis (5), Christos Papoukas (1), Alexandros Athymaritis, Rafail Forotzidis. Head Coach: Theodoros Chatzitheodorou.
MEXICO: Alfredo de la Mova, Hazed Veya, Raul Vargus, Raul Muniz, Rodrigo Avalos, Sinahi Gonzalez, Arturo Ocejo, Alexey Grubnik (1), Diego Mercado (4), Jorge Cervantes (3), Isaac Contreras. Head Coach: Raul de la Pena.

Match Report:
Greece earned a shot at Group A winner Croatia in Thursday’s classification 1-8 quarterfinal, a tough ask for any team. Greece won it on the strength of victory over Mexico. Greece called all the shot in the first quarter, only letting in a goal four seconds from time. Mexico worked hard to level the second period and could have won had it not been for an unusual situation. Mexican goalkeeper and captain Alfredo de la Mova made a classic mistake after a timeout, when he inadvertently sent the ball upfield to an opponent rather than a team-mate, and he returned it into the net for 7-4 late in the third quarter for what became the halftime score. Grigorios Kapetanakis looked classy from the top with his shooting with four of his five coming in the second half. Stylianos Argyropoulos-Kanakkis .was another to impress with four goals. For Mexico, powerhouse Diego Mercado netted four from close in front of goal.

Picture: Russell McKinnon

Match 44: 11:20, CHINA 16 IRAN 13

Quarters: 6-1, 5-3, 3-5, 2-4

Referees: Daniel Daners (URU), Viktor Salnichenko (KAZ).

Extra Man: CHN: 5/12. IRI: 7/8.

Pens: CHN: 1/1. IRI: 1/1.

CHINA: Guozheng Wei, Zekai Xie (1), Zhongxzan Chen (6), Jiahao Peng, Rongkun Lie, Bezyi Wang (1), Yingyi Gao (4), Rui Chen (2), Yi Lu, Dong Ni (1), Xiang Fu. Head Coach: Yaohua Chen.
IRAN: Hamed Karimi, Masoud Ahmadi, Mehdi Yazdankhah (2), Arshia Almasi (1), Amirhossein Keihany, Peiman Asadiaghajari, Mohammadmahdi Heydari (6), Hamidreza Moghaddam (2), Soheil Rostamian (1), Aminghavidel Hajiagha, Shayan Ghasemidaryan. Head Coach: Vahid Rezaeiashtiyani.

Match report:
China gained its first win of the tournament and Iran came close to gaining its first. With a gush of action in the first quarter, China set the tone for the match and the second quarter also looked good as Iran started coming back into the play. With both teams consistently marking up and pressuring the ball, goals were not easily come by, however, the halftime chat for Iran seemed positive. With Iran winning both the last quarter by two goals it augers well for the final days of competition, especially heading into Super Friday when the entire complement of teams take to the water for the ranking matches and semifinals. Zhongxzan Chen was particularly dangerous from the top-right position, claiming six goals with his right arm. On the other side of the ledger, Mohammadmahdi Heydari (pictured) was equally vicious with his scoring from the top left, scoring three of his six goals in the second period. Both teams gave up penalty goals in the final quarter and the closest Iran came to victory was at 13-15 just inside the last minute. Iran was brilliant on extra-man plays with seven from eight, while defending seven attempts by China.

Picture: Russell McKinnon

Match 41: 10:00, SOUTH AFRICA 12 UZBEKISTAN 23

Quarters: 2-4, 3-6, 3-5, 4-8

Referees: Ahmed Kotb (EGY), Haldun Toygarli (TUR).

Extra Man: RSA: 5/13. UZB: 6/8.

Pens: Nil

SOUTH AFRICA: Gareth May, Roarke Olver (2), Tim Rezelman (1), Shane Fourie (1), Claudio Fernandes, Nicholas Downes (1), Jason Evezard (3), Liam Neill (3), Keanan Alexander, Wyatt Edwards (1), Themba Mthembu. Head Coach: Jason Sileno.
UZBEKISTAN: Radion Knabibullaev, Mirjalol Nagmatov (1), Doniyor Umarov, Artur Kim, Maksim Krakhotin (3), Aleksey Zaytsev (4), Kirill Rustamov (11), Egor Chumachenko (2), Grorgiy Mamedov, Aleksey Massel (2), Khayotson Rakhimov. Head Coach: Boris Rustamov.

Match Report:
South Africa did not learn the lesson of other teams, even from last night’s final match as master scorer Kirill Rustamov did another demolition job for Uzbekistan. While his impressive scoring tally included 27 before this match, out of the 46 total in Almaty, one would think he should have been marked out of the match, like the Italians did. No, South Africa gave him little special attention in the second half in particular. Rustamov played for his team in the first half looking for passes, then in the third and fourth, when mostly unguarded, he scored four goals in each quarter for a tournament equaling 11 goals. He scored 11 on day two against Canada. South Africa worked well in phases, but it was Uzbekistan, under the new coach of Rustamov’s father, Boris, who took control. The head coach up until Tuesday night was Aleksandr Sokolov, but two hours after having dinner he suffered a heart attack and was taken to hospital where he was operated on and is now in a comfortable condition. Aleksey Zaytsev scored four goals before he was fouled out of the match and for South Africa, Jason Evezard and Liam Neill scored three each. Up front, South Africa looked good, but no-one seemed to want to shut Rustamov down. The win now allows Rustamov, who plays in the Russian league, to increase his scoring tally on Thursday from 38 goals. In 2012, he was the highest goal-scorer at the FINA Youth World Championships in Perth. He will undoubtedly be the best here.

Picture: Russell McKinnon