Split (dpa) – Germany’s water polo players started with a sobering defeat in the European Championships in Split. The team of the German Swimming Association (DSV), which was greatly rejuvenated after missing the Olympic qualification for Tokyo, lost in the preliminary round group C on Monday with 6:13 (1:3, 1:2, 2:4, 2:4) against the Netherlands.
Despite the return of the two experienced players Marko Stamm and Mateo Cuk, the team coached by national coach Petar Porobic struggled throughout the game in Croatia with weak shots on goal and were already 5-1 down in the second half. “We have a new team and we need patience,” said Porobic, who bemoaned too many minor mistakes from his team. The German goals in the first appearance in the Spaladium Arena were scored by Denis Strelezkij, Zoran Bozic (2 each), Fynn Schütze and Mark Gansen.
In the second of three preliminary round duels, the DSV selection on August 31 (3.30 p.m.) in the already decisive game for third place and progression will meet Romania, which lost 9:16 to world champion Spain at the start. Due to the high defeat in a direct comparison against the Netherlands, the German team has little chance of the hoped-for second place.
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