Olympic Qualifiers: Croatia Water Polo Tops Germany in Final Group Stage Match (22:8)

Daniela Rogulj

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On Thursday evening, Croatia and Germany met for the final group stage match, after which we will learn the pairs of the quarterfinals.

Behind Croatia are four rounds made up of three 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, and lost to Russia yesterday 13:14.

Croatia v. Germany Recap

Luka Bukic scored the first goal of the match for Croatia (1:0), while Luka Loncar made it 2:1 with 6:14 to go in the first. Maro Jokovic scored for 3:2 a minute and a half later. 

Luka Loncar scored for 4:2 and Josip Vrlic scored for 5:3 which was how the first quarter ended. 

Jokovic and Buslje opened the second quarter with goals for Croatia (7:3), and Vukicevic made it 8:4 with four minutes to go. Loren Fatovic scored for 9:5 with just under two minutes to go. Buslje scored twice to end the second quarter at 11:5. 

Vukicevic opened the third quarter with two goals for 13:5 with 6 minutes to go. Lovre Milos scored for 14:5, and Rino Buric for 15:5. Buslje scored to end the third quarter at 16:6.

Thanks to Vukicevic, Buric, and Bukic, it was 18:6 with just under six minutes to go in the final quarter. Loncar scored for 20:7 shortly after, while Bukic scored two goals for 22:8, which is how the match ended. 

Following the group stage, the quarterfinal stage will commence on Friday, February 19, in which the four best teams from each group will meet.  The pairs will be determined by their positions in the standings (A1 – B4, A2 – B3, A3 – B2, and A4 – B1). 

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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