LAUSANNE, Switzerland, March 10. THE teams of Canada, Germany, Greece and Italy assured their attendance at the 2008 Olympic Games in Beijing (CHN) by finishing in the top four places at the Water Polo Men's Olympic Qualification Tournament, which took place in Oradea (ROU) from March 2-9, 2008.
The competition, attended by the FINA President Mustapha Larfaoui, was won by Germany, who defeated Italy in the final match by 10-9 (9-9 at the end of the regular time). In the bronze-medal game, Greece was better (13-4) than Canada. The Canadians, however, were the positive revelation of the competition after beating the local team Romania in the quarter-finals, thus securing a spot for the Olympic Games.
The final ranking of the tournament was: Germany (1st), Italy (2nd), Greece (3rd), Canada (4th), Romania (5th), Russia (6th), Slovakia (7th), Former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia (8th), Brazil (9th), Iran (10th), Mexico (11th) and Kazakhstan (12th).
The four first teams in Oradea will join in Beijing the squads that previously qualified for the Games: Australia, China, Croatia, Hungary, Montenegro, Serbia, Spain and United States of America.
The draw for the 12-team Olympic tournament will take place on March 22, 2008 in Beijing (CHN), on the occasion of the water polo test events in the Chinese capital.
Special thanks to FINA for contributing this report.