Montenegro and Russia are the last two undefeated sides at the men’s Olympic water polo qualifier in Rotterdam, after the latter produced a brilliant retaliation to defeat Croatia.
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Russia still branded as such by the International Swimming Federation (FINA) contempt World Anti-Doping Agency authorizations – trailed 11-13 in the final retro, but scored three unrequited goals to defeat the 2016 Olympic runners-up and change top of Group B.
The Russians have three wins and one draw, leaving them in pole position to win the group. The Dutch hosts also shaped a remarkable retaliation, recovering from 5-9 down to draw 11-11 with France. Fewer than three seconds remained when The Netherlands scored their final equalizer, winning the fourth quarter 6-2.
Romania beat Germany 12-7 in the group’s other match, eliminating the Germans. A winner-take-all game between Romania and France – level on three points – will decide who will be the final team to advance from Group B, with Croatia, Russia and the host nation all through already.
France’s goal difference is better than Romania’s. In Group A, already-eliminated Brazil fell 12-8 to Georgia and Montenegro beat Greece 8-4. With Turkey ineligible because of a coronavirus eruption, there were only two games played, and Montenegro, Georgia, Greece and Canada are all finished to the quarter-finals.
Montenegro Rio 2016 fourth-place finishers – will top the group if they avoid defeat versus Georgia tomorrow. The tournament’s top three teams will qualify for this year’s Olympic 2020 Games in Tokyo.
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