ZAGREB, 21 May 2020 – The Croatian Water Polo Federation (HVS) is planning to pay homage to former coach Ratko Rudić, who this month retired from the sport, by organising a game between Croatia and the rest of the world.
In essence, by organising this farewell match, the whole water polo world would have the chance to pay tribute to the most trophy-winning coach in water polo, but also to the second most trophy-winning coach in the world in all ball sports.
Rudić coached teams to four Olympic gold medals, of which three consecutive and with three different national teams (Croatia, Italy, Yugoslavia) and won over 40 medals during his career which saw him also coach Brazil. In 2007 was inducted into the International Swimming Hall of Fame
HVS vice president and executive director Perica Bukić told daily Sportske Novosti that the federation is organising the match Croatia v Rest of the World for later in the summer.
“As far as Ratko’s work in water polo is concerned, it’s hard for me to remember any of my periods in water polo in these over 40 years, without literally all these competitions and events being intertwined with Ratko Rudić. What Ratko did with one national team in 1984-1988, and then again with a completely different one from 1992-1996, and after 10 years with a third, the Croatian national team, especially in the period from 2007 to 2012. It is unrepeatable and incredible, and that is why he is the most successful of all time. Such a spectacular sports career certainly deserves is a top spectacle in the end, so I can exclusively announce that the Croatian Water Polo Federation will soon organise a farewell match for Ratko Rudić, Croatia against the World. We are planning this for the end of the summer. Together with some of the players who stopped playing actively, and with whom he brought Olympic gold from London to our beautiful homeland. Ratko and his players fully deserved it,” Bukić told Sportske Novosti.