HUNTINGTON BEACH, California, May 7. DEJAN Udovicic has been named Head Coach of the USA Water Polo Men's Senior National Team through the 2016 Olympic Games. Udovicic, the former head coach of the Serbian national team, joins USA Water Polo after leading Serbia to a bronze medal at the 2012 London Olympic Games, his teams' 16th medal in the last 17 major championship events. The most successful coach in Serbian team sports, Udovicic has compiled nearly 500 victories while winning more than 80 percent of all matches. Most recently he led the Radnicki Water Polo Club to a Euro Cup title and an appearance in the Serbian National Championship final in their first year of competition.
"Dejan has led his teams to remarkable success and consistency at all levels," said Christopher Ramsey, CEO of USA Water Polo. "He is not only a proven winner, but also a great builder of programs and developer of talent. He will be a strong leader for our senior team as well as for our club, college and pipeline coaches. We are pleased to welcome him and his family to our country, and we look forward to working with Dejan to better our sport."
"I am delighted to become the new Head Coach of USA Water Polo Men's National Team and proud to share the same vision for success as USA Water Polo," said Udovicic. "We are starting a new long term program and a lot of hard work is in front of us. The United States has great potential and we will be prepared for the challenge ahead."
Udovicic was named Head Coach of the Serbian National Team in June, 2006 following the separation of Serbia and Montenegro. In the six years that followed he built Serbia into a water polo powerhouse. Included in his run was a FINA World Championship in 2009, two FINA World Cup titles in 2006 and 2010, two European Championships in 2006 and 2012, two bronze medals at the 2008 and 2012 Olympic Games, and five FINA World League Super Final titles.
In addition to his duties with the national team, Udovicic was also the longtime coach of VK Partizan, one of Serbia's top water polo clubs. From 2000-2009 he led the club to four national championships, four national cups and an appearance in the Euroleague final four. No stranger to the club, Udovicic played for Partizan along with neighboring VK Beograd, in a playing career that spanned more than 10 years.
Udovicic makes his debut with the USA Men's National Team at the upcoming FINA World League Super Final, June 11-16 in Chelyabinsk, Russia. That is followed by the FINA World Championships, July 19-August 4 in Barcelona, Spain.
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