GWANGJU, 23 July 2019 – Croatia has beat Germany on Tuesday to reach the semifinal of the 2019 FINA World Water Polo Championships in Gwangju, South Korea.
Ivica Tucak’s team continued their unbeaten streak at the championships today with a 10-8 (1-2, 3-1, 3-3, 3-2) victory over Germany in the quarterfinal.
Marko Bijač in Croatia’s goal was again in great form, making 6 important saves, whilst Joković was the team’s top scorer with 3 goals. Vukičević and Bušlje socred 2, whilst Benić, Šetka and Garcia scored one each.
“The most important thing is that we pulled the game out. But we did not play the way we can. Although I can not say we played bad. This is conditioned by the weight of the match and the strength of the opponent. I said that Germany was not going to be an easy team to beat. We started worse but then showed what we wanted and led 7: 3, but after that we received a few easy goals. We must not let this happen. But I’m glad the game was like this. It is extremely good for us that we’ve played one of those stressful matches. Our first and foremost goal here is accomplished, a medal fight. The next goal is most important, entering the final, acquiring a visa for Tokyo Olympics and trying to defend our gold medal. I believe we have the strength to do this,” Tucak said.
The win means Croatia will face Spain in the semifinal on Thursday after they beat Serbia 12-9.
2019 FINA World Water Polo Championships quarterfinal:
CROATIA – GERMANY 10-8 (1-2, 3-1, 3-3, 3-2)
CROATIA: Bijač (6 obrana), Marcelić; Macan, Fatović, Lončar, Joković 3, Benić 1, Vukičević 2, Bušlje 2, Miloš, Vrlić, Šetka 1, Garcia 1
GERMANY: Schenkel (9 obrana), Gotz; Reibel 1, Van der Bosch, Real 2, Preuss, Jungling, Strelezkij 1, Gielen 3, Stamm, Ćuk 1, Restović, Eidner