WL Super Final: Day 4
June 17, 2012 Leave a comment
USA 7 : 5 AUSTRALIA
The Australian and American men’s water polo teams belong in the group of top 12 outfits in the World. The fact that they are non-European makes the rivalry between these two teams special as both aspire to be the best outside Europe. That is why every match between them has a special significance.
On the 6th day since their arrival in Almaty the US team would have been feeling the effects of jet-lag more than any other team. The time difference with Los-Angeles is 11 hours. They would have hit ‘the wall’ by now in terms of how the athletes would feel during the games in the last 3 days.
However, today the US team started on a high note and by the end of the second period were leading 5:1. In the third and fourth quarters though they noticeably slowed down their pace and dropped the intensity of their movements. Because of this, despite having a number of goal-scoring opportunities to extend their lead the Americans failed to convert them. Australia took advantage of this change in momentum and managed to reduce the gap to bring the score to 6:5 with 3.15 minutes to go in the match. But USA’s Peter Varellas – who was his team’s highest scorer with 3 goals – shot a perimeter off-the-hand goal that sealed his team’s victory 7:5.
Australia’s performance was lacklustre. The team showed a noticeable lack of confidence which can be explained by the residual effects of the team’s losses to Croatia and Spain who are also in Australia’s preliminary group at the London Olympiad.
X-man: USA 16/6 (38%), Australia 10/2 (20%)
Referees: Fernandez and Balfanbayev
The other results of day 4 are:
CHINA 1 : 11 SPAIN, ITALY 14 : 1 BRAZIL, CROATIA 11 : 6 KAZAKHSTAN
The following semi-final matches will be played on day 5: for 1-4 places: ITALY v SPAIN, CROATIA v USA; for 5-8 places: AUSTRALIA v KAZAKHSTAN, CHINA v BRAZIL