Croatian water polo giants win gold

Water Polo
photo: Ex13
I give both teams credit: all players survived.

 

Warning: this article has nothing to do with computers. Since it’s my blog, I figure that I can break its rules once in a while.

Yesterday, I watched the Croatian men’s water polo team defeat the Italian team 8 to 6, to win the Olympic team gold medal. It was a terrific game that matched the cunning Italians against the gigantic Croatian players.

I love to watch water polo, but I suspect that most people don’t. If you’ve ever played it, you appreciate how hard it is just to race up and down the pool, then struggle with your defender. Most of the action happens beneath the surface, where attacker and defender wrestle for control. A good water polo player must be fast, strong, and, like Dan Marino, have a quick release when he takes a shot at the goal.

A game contains four 7-minute quarters, and substitutions are limited. It’s a formula for complete knackerization.

Here’s the Croatian 2012 Olympic men’s water polo team roster. Check out the sizes of these big boys!

Name Pos. Height Weight Date of birth
1 Pavic, JosipJosip Pavić GK 1.95 m (6 ft 5 in) 90 kg (198 lb) 01982-01-1515 January 1982
2 Burić, DamirDamir Burić CB 2.05 m (6 ft 9 in) 115 kg (254 lb) 01980-12-022 December 1980
3 Boskovic, MihoMiho Bošković D 1.96 m (6 ft 5 in) 96 kg (212 lb) 01983-01-1111 January 1983
4 Dobud, NiksaNikša Dobud CF 1.99 m (6 ft 6 in) 118 kg (260 lb) 01985-08-055 August 1985
5 Jokovic, MaroMaro Joković D 2.03 m (6 ft 8 in) 95 kg (209 lb) 01987-10-011 October 1987
6 Muslim, PetarPetar Muslim D 2.00 m (6 ft 7 in) 102 kg (225 lb) 01988-03-2626 March 1988
7 Buljubasic, IvanIvan Buljubašić CB 1.98 m (6 ft 6 in) 108 kg (238 lb) 01987-10-3131 October 1987
8 Buslje, AndroAndro Bušlje CB 2.00 m (6 ft 7 in) 115 kg (254 lb) 01986-01-044 January 1986
9 Sukno, SandroSandro Sukno D 2.00 m (6 ft 7 in) 93 kg (205 lb) 01990-06-3030 June 1990
10 Barac, SamirSamir Barač D 1.87 m (6 ft 2 in) 89 kg (196 lb) 01973-11-022 November 1973
11 Hinic, IgorIgor Hinić CF 2.02 m (6 ft 8 in) 110 kg (243 lb) 01975-12-044 December 1975
12 Obradovic, PauloPaulo Obradović D 1.90 m (6 ft 3 in) 100 kg (220 lb) 01986-03-099 March 1986
13 Vican, FranoFrano Vićan GK 1.92 m (6 ft 4 in) 94 kg (207 lb) 01976-01-2424 January 1976

Table from Wikipedia

Traditionally, the water polo teams from the Mediterranean and Adriatic Sea areas are powerhouses. The Italian and Spanish teams are usually quick and clever. It was fun watching the Italian team give the much larger Croatians a good run for the gold.

Wolf Wigo provided NBC’s expert commentary. He was a key player on the US water polo team in the 1996, 2000, and 2004 Olympic Games. Here’s this article’s local color: Wolf’s father, Bruce, is CEO of the Swimming Hall of Fame, right here in River City.

Visit my website: http://russbellew.com
© Russ Bellew · Fort Lauderdale, Florida, USA · phone 954 873-4695
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