Olympic Qualifiers: Croatia Water Polo Defeats Georgia in Quarterfinal (6:15)

Daniela Rogulj

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Behind Croatia are five rounds made up of four victories and one defeat at the Olympic Qualifying tournament in Rotterdam thus far. Recall, Croatia won their first match against Romania at 16:6, defeated the Netherlands 25:8, topped France 10:13, lost to Russia 13:14, and beat Germany 22:8 in the final group stage match. 

Croatia thus finished the group stage with eight points, four wins, and a defeat against Russia, which finished first with nine points. 

To qualify for the Olympics, Croatia needed to achieve two more victories in Rotterdam, the first against Georgia in the quarterfinals, and then on Saturday in the semifinals or on Sunday in a possible duel for third place.

Georgia v Croatia Recap

Maro Jokovic scored Croatia’s first goal and the first of the game for 0:1 with 5:26 to go in the first quarter. Garcia made it 2:2 for Croatia nearly four minutes later – and Luka Loncar scored to end the first quarter 2:3 for Croatia. 

Luka Bukic scored 20 seconds into the second quarter for 2:4, and two goals by Ante Vukicevic increased Croatia’s lead to 6:2 with 5:24 to go in the quarter. Loren Fatovic made it 2:7 with 4:45 left, and Maro Jokovic scored a rocket from outside for 3:8. Loncar scored for 3:9 with a minute to go, which was the score going into the half. 

Josip Vrlic scored Croatia’s first goal of the third quarter nearly six minutes in! Croatia was up +6. Luka Bukic made it 4:11, which is how the third quarter ended. 

Luka Bukic opened the final quarter with a goal for 4:12. Fatovic scored a penalty for 4:13 and again for 5:14. Bukic scored for 6:15, which was the final score of the match. 

The four winning teams will play in the semifinals on February 20. The finalists of the qualifying tournament, as well as the national team that wins the match for third place on February 21, will qualify for the Olympic Games in Tokyo, which are scheduled from July 24 to August 8, 2021. 

To read more about sport in Croatia, follow TCN’s dedicated page.


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