- Greece Saves a Point & First Place -
MEN'S WATER POLO - GROUP STAGE (GROUP A)
|Greece||8 - 8||Hungary|
|(1 - 2)
(2 - 3)
(6 - 5)
(8 - 8)
Vlachopoulos scored a goal with 5 seconds to play giving Greece an extremely valuable point against Hungary. The 8-8 draw keeps Greece unbeaten in the Group Stage of the tournament and puts then as the favorites to finish first in Group A. The Galanolefki will face Brazil on Friday for matchday 4.
Greece was up against another tough opponent after their 9-9 draw with the World Champions Serbia on Monday. In a defensive showdown from both teams, the first half ended in favor of Hungary 2-3. Greece responded in the third period and took a 6-4 advantage before Hungary cut the lead to one (6-5) going into the final 8 minutes. However, in the fourth period Hungary was able to regain the lead 7-6 and Genidounias brought the game level at 7-7. It seemed that Hungary would go on to win the match after scoring with less than 2 minutes remaining, but Vlachopoulos had the final say. On Greece’s final attack, the former Olympiacos star scored with 5 seconds remaining to tie the match at 8-8, saving an important point for our National Team.
The “hero” Vlachopoulos was Greece’s leading scorer with 3 goals as Genidounias and Gounas each netted 2 goals. Mourikis also scored a goal for Greece.
With today’s result, Greece remains undefeated in Group A after one win against Japan and two draws against the powerhouses Serbia and Hungary. The Galanolefki currently sit in 2nd place behind Brazil, who plays later today against Serbia. Greece has two games remaining in Group play, against Brazil and Australia, and will now be considered the heavy favorites to win the group. With both powerhouse nations behind them (Serbia and Hungary) two wins against Brazil and Australia will give Greece top spot and a theoretically easier opponent in the Quarterfinals of the competition. Greece’s first place showdown will be against the hosts Brazil on Friday at 6:30 PM (EST).