Having already shocked Russia with a win yesterday, Canada pulled out another surprise in the Olympic qualification tournament in Trieste by recovering several times to eventually draw 14-14 with Hungary. Here are the opinions of the two coaches on the match.
Tibor Benedek, Hungary head coach:
“I’m obviously not able to be satisfied with the concession of 14 goals, but with scoring 14 goals, yes. There weren’t big problems with our attacking, they were better during player disadvantages, therefore from those 15 advantages we had, we scored 10. There were a few things lacking in defence but overall our defence wasn’t bad. One or two missed blocks, a poor recovery swim or an unlucky goal – all of these came to pass. I think the team was strong, we knew how big the match was and that it was match we wanted to win. We were winning confidently towards the end but Canada came forward at the end and scored easy goals. Tomorrow we have a match and everything starts all over again with our aim still being the same: be the first in the group. From now on, this will be a big battle. It’s not a surprise that there are surprises in this tournament because everyone is playing for their lives, everyone wants to be the best and moreover, we play a match every day which makes the situation more difficult, but our aim has not changed!”
Giuseppe (Pino) Porzio, Canada head coach and former coach of Benedek when the Hungarian coach played under Porzio at Italian club Pro Recco:
“We played a rock-hard match. I think the Hungarian team played under pressure because on paper they are much stronger and they were expected to win. However, we played well, we were strong and we struggled unto the last second, even when Hungary led by two goals with one minute to go, and from this struggle came the result of a draw. Tibor (Benedek) was one of the best players that I coached. I loved working together with him and I understand that it is a difficult situation for them to be a big water polo power and have to fight for Olympic qualification. He is a superb coach and a superb person”.
Result – Men’s Olympic qualification tournament, Trieste
Matchday 2, Group A:
Canada 14–14 Hungary (3–4, 4–4, 4–5, 3–1)
Officials: Peila (USA), Willis (South Africa)
CANADA: Aleksic – Kubada, Vikalo 2, Constantin Bicari 4, Boyd 1, Robinson, Lapins, Graham 3, Radojcic, Conway 3, Torakis 1, McElroy. Head coach: Pino Porzio
HUNGARY: Nagy V. – Erdélyi, Vámos 2, Szivós 1, Varga Dániel 1, Varga Dénes 3, Hárai 1. Replacements: Zalánki, Manhercz K. 3, Hosnyánszky 2, Decker Á. 1, Bedő. Head coach: Tibor Benedek
Press release – waterpolo.hu
Copy editor: bm