WORLD CHAMPIONS: Greek women’s water polo team on top of the world!
By George Georgakopoulos
Greece is the new world champion in women's water polo after the national team's 9-8 triumph in the final over host China on July 29. The Greeks were dominant throughout the game in Shanghai and completed the tournament with a perfect record -- six wins in six games -- to win their first World Championship crown. This was a gold medal that Greek women's water polo thoroughly deserved, given its progress over the last couple of decades. Until now it had only won trophies in club competitions in Europe as well as the World League six year ago, but never before had it risen to the top in a World Championship or an Olympic Games. Coach Giorgos Morfesis’s ladies were level with the hosts at 2-2 after the first period, but two unanswered goals in the second and another at the start of the third gave them a three-goal lead (5-2) that was to prove unbeatable. The Chinese, a youthful team with a strategy of taking the game to the two-meter zone, had problems with the Greek defense. The Greeks led 9-6 midway through the last period, and that proved to be enough for them. The hosts came close, reducing the arrears to one goal with one minute left to play, but Greece’s experience dominated and the national team finished the match glorious.