FINA World Masters Water Polo Championships: Dubrovnik Veterans Win 4th Gold Medal!

Daniela Rogulj

August 10, 2019 – The Dubrovnik Veterans are now four-time World Champions! 

The best in Christchurch (New Zealand) in 2002, the best in Rimini (Italy) in 2012, the best in Montreal (Canada) in 2014 and now the best in Gwangju (South Korea) in 2019. For the fourth time in the history of the Dubrovnik club, which was founded in 1997, the Dubrovnik Veterans (Dubrovacki Veterani) are the world champions! Thus, this celebrated veteran team has won a total of six medals from the World Championships (four gold, one silver, and one bronze) and a total of twelve medals in major competitions, reports Dubrovački Vjesnik.

The Dubrovnik Veterans thus secured the gold medal in the category for men older than 45 years of age. On Saturday, the Croatian side was equal in points with YBL-Octopus from Hungary 7:7. In that match, the Hungarian side led only once, and that was at the start for 1:0. Then, YBL Octopus made an incredible comeback, with Dubrovnik leading 2:1, 3:2, 4:3, 5:4, 6:5, and 7:6. One minute and 25 seconds before the end of the game, the Hungarians equalized at 7:7 with an extra man.

Just four hours after the duel against YBL Octopus, the Dubrovnik Veterans were scheduled to play against the weakest team in the tournament – the last-placed BT Guam from the USA, who scored no points and convincingly lost the previous five games. However, the American side forfeited the match, thus giving Dubrovnik 3 points and the top spot of the championship. 

The Dubrovnik Veterans scored 16 of 18 possible championship points. It was their only appearance at the World Championship in the ‘plus 45’ category without a defeat, with five of the six matches won. YBL Octopus is (currently) in second with 13 points and also concluded their appearance at the Championship. Spandau 04 is in third with 12 points and one match less, but has only three points more than the fourth place team, AMPA ECP from Brazil, who play against each other in the last game of the tournament. A win or a draw for the German side will secure them the second place of the tournament, thus pushing the Hungarian club to third. However, a defeat would leave Spandau 04 without a medal, give the Brazilian club the third while keeping the Hungarian club in second. 

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