KUWAIT: The quarter finals of FINA World Men’s Junior Water Polo Championship being hosted by Kuwait until Friday will start today, as well as the ranking for 9 to 20th places.
The tournament is being held under the patronage of House Speaker Marzouq Al-Ghanim at HH Sheikh Nasser Al-Mohammad Olympic Swimming Pools Complex, as Kuwait team will compete in the ranking stage after losing to USA 8-16 in the fourth round.
Leaders of the four groups will play the quarterfinals starting tomorrow by facing second and third place teams. Greece, the current champion, Spain and Serbia are guaranteed to lead their groups and it is most likely for Italy to join them.
Those who end in fourth and fifth place in each group will play for the ranking from 9 to 20. Serbia was able to secure first place with eight points by defeating Croatia 11-6 in the fourth round, then China in the fifth round 16-4. Croatia is second with six points by beating Japan 14-12 in fifth round yesterday.
Japan took third place with four points after defeating South Africa 26-11 in the fourth round. China with two points and pointless south Africa will play in the ranking stage.
Spain guaranteed its leadership of the Group 2 with eight points by defeating Canada 15-7 while Hungary defeated Russia 12-9. Hungary and Canada will play in the quarterfinals, while Russia and Egypt will be in the ranking stage.
Kuwait team lost for the third consecutive time, guaranteeing the USA to reach the quarterfinals along with Italy, though Italy drew with Montenegro 12-12.
Greece was harsh on Uzbekistan and beat it 27-4 to guarantee its eight points on top of the group, while Australia defeated Brazil 9-6.
Meanwhile Deputy Chairman of Kuwait Swimming Federation Hameed Al-Ghareeb said all matters related to the championship are moving smoothly in a way that pleased all participating delegations.
He said the KSF spares no effort in serving Kuwait youth and host major world events. Members of FINA Taha Al-Kushari from Oman and Khalil Al-Jaber from Qatar agreed that Kuwait impressed everyone with its high ability to organize a world championship with complete professionality for the second time following that in 1999.
Al-Kushari and Al-Jaber, who attended the opening ceremony and FINA meetings hoped this event will be a prelude for Kuwait hosting bigger events, bearing in mind it has all the necessary facilities.
By Abdellatif Sharaa