Greece’s men’s water polo team has qualified for the Tokyo Olympics, beating Russia 13-10 at the World Qualification Tournament in Rotterdam on Saturday night.
During the match, Greece held a narrow lead over the first two 8-minute periods (4-3, 6-5) and managed to widen their lead in the third (11-9) and fourth for the final 13-10. Angelos Vlachopoulos, who was voted man of the match, led Greece with five goals.
This is the 16th Olympics qualification for the Greek men’s team since 1920, with their best finish a 4th place at the 2004 Athens Olympics. They also finished 6th in Atlanta (1996) and Rio de Janeiro (2016).
“It is a great day for Greece, water polo and the country’s sports. I congratulate all the contributors to this great success, players and coaches,” the President of the Hellenic Swimming Federation, Dimitris Diathesopoulos, said.
Already qualified for the Olympics are host nation Japan, Kazakhstan, Serbia, Italy, Spain, the United States, Hungary, South Africa and Australia. The last two are the Africa and Oceania continental selections, respectively.
The women’s water polo team just failed to qualify last month in the women’s World Qualification Tournament in Trieste, Italy, finishing 3rd behind Hungary and the Netherlands.