martedì 6 gennaio 2015

Int. All Stars triumph at Water Polo by the Sea

The International All Stars team have won for the first time at Water Polo by the Sea, the 12-10 effort enough to break the Aussie Sharks three year stronghold on the event at the Bondi Icebergs, Sydney. FINA World Player of the Year and captain of the All Stars team Filipe Filipovic was named player of the match as his clinical attack saw him score a personal tally of six goals to lead his team to victory.

Despite the loss, young Aussies Aaron Younger and Lachlan Edwards produced impressive performances, Younger with a solo effort in the third term to swim away for his third goal, while Edwards showed the crowd why he is a centre forward international opponents need to be wary of in 2015. The All Stars were the first to open their account as they looked to Filipovic who scored his first of two goals in a seemingly effortless manner. Young West Australian George Ford soon returned serve, as did Younger who put two goals in the back of the cage for Australia to lead 3-2 at the first break.

It was again the All Stars who struck first early in the second term, off the arm of Italian Fabrizio Buonocore, however Matt Gronow and Lachlan Edwards soon put the sharks back in the lead. Filipovic was again in the thick of the action to score one of two penalty opportunities. With the intensity at fever pitch, Aussie Jarrod Gilchrist scored his first before the reliable arm of Filipovic levelled the scores 6-6 by the half time break.


The third quarter was the game breaker for the All Stars; with World Championship silver medallist Albert Espanyol scoring a penalty goal before Filipovic brought home his fifth for the game. Younger then made the most of a favourable penalty to swim away from the All Star defenders for his third goal. USA player Zach Lucas earned his first of two goals late in the term for the All Stars, his efforts bookending a powerful goal from Montenegro’s Aleksander Ivovic to see the internationals flex their muscles and extend their lead to four goals, the score 11-7 at the final exchange.

Desperate to deliver a fourth successive victory at the event for the vocal Australian audience, the Aussie Sharks turned to Gilchrist who scored first in the final term, before veteran Johnno Cotterill put in a strong personal performance to steal possession and continue to swim the length of the field, bringing the Sharks within two goals of the lead.

Irrespective of the comeback, Filipovic produced his sixth goal to restore the three goal lead for the All Stars, which was enough to defend the lead in spite of a late goal to Aussie Tyler Martin, the internationals winning 12-10 for their first victory at Water Polo by the Sea.

Filip Filipovic hold the trophy for the International All Stars.

Aussie Sharks head coach Elvis Fatovic said that it was a hard fought game, which was beneficial for the Aussies at the beginning of an important pre Olympic year. “The game was as hard as we expected, we came up against some of the best players of the world and it was a pleasure to play against them,” Fatovic said. “You need to keep in mind that for many of the Europeans, they have come off the peak of their season, while it is the beginning of ours, and we have a big year ahead.”

The Aussie Sharks will next play together at the BHP Billiton Aquatic Super Series, when they take on the USA on Saturday January 31 in Perth.

Result: International All Stars 12 bt Australia 10

Aussie Sharks: James Stanton, Richie Campbell, Nathan Power, Lachlan Edwards, Matt Gronow, Jarrod Gilchrist, Aaron Younger, Tyler Martin, Mitch Emery, Johnno Cotterill, Blake Edwards, James Clark, George Ford

AUS Scorers: A Younger 3, J Gilchrist 2, M Gronow, L Edwards, T Martin, J Cotterill, G Ford.

Report: Water Polo Australia.

The Aussie Sharks line up ahead of the Water Polo by the Sea match.
Photograph: James O’Connor.

The International All Stars team ahead of the Water Polo by the Sea match.
Photograph: James O’Connor.

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