2013 Junior Men’s World Championships: Day 1
August 13, 2013 Leave a comment
The first day of the championships did not produce any unexpected surprises. Most of the teams that were considered as the main contenders met with much weaker opponents, with the exception of Spain V USA match. But even in that game the final score does not reflect the strength difference in favour of the winners. The Spaniards led from the very beginning reaching 8:3 score-line by the beginning of the last quarter before allowing the Americans to reduce the deficit towards the end of the last period for a final score 8:6.
The Mediterraneans displayed a skillful dominating performance using the elements of the tactical trend that many teams employ nowadays – including the US – which is based upon the style of play originated in the Balkan countries, namely, Croatia, Serbia and Montenegro. In a nutshell, it is mainly ‘pressing’ in defense with some ‘zonining’ but only when necessary.
With four minutes to go in the match the Americans had a chance to come back by scoring 2 quick goals to reduce the deficit to 5:8. But silly actions of Patrick Fellner who was excluded twice in a row for ill-disciplined actions stopped the momentum that US started to gain.
Australia opened its campaign by convincingly beating Japan, 15:7. This team’s best player was Paul Sindone who scored five goals and was instrumental in several other successful attacking combinations. Most other Australians contributed well to the final result, in particular Matthew Perrott, Tyler Sinclair and Lachlan Edward. Gabriel Addley was reliable in the goals by deflecting most of the shots that he was supposed to save.
The Japanese juniors tried to emulate their senior team’s original style of play which was demonstrated at the Super-final of the World League this year. Some instances were impressive but overall Japan could not match their opponents physically today.
Russia had a convincing win by scoring 16 goals versus Slovakia’s 5. The preliminary group in which these two teams are seeded is one of the strongest with the other two being Spain and the USA.
The other results of the first day are: Italy 17:3 Canada, Serbia 21:3 South Africa, Brazil 19:8 Uzbekistan, Croatia 12:4 Kazakhstan and Hungary 21:3 Columbia.
The second day of the preliminary round will be much more interesting with the following exciting matches coming up: Slovakia–USA, Spain-Russia, Japan-Kazakhstan, Croatia-Australia and Italy-Hungary. These games’ results are likely to determine the opponents for the decisive play-off matches on 15 August.