Jadran Split Wins Historic First Croatian Water Polo Championship Title!

Jadran Split Wins Historic First Croatian Water Polo Championship Title!
Milan Sabic

May 17, 2023 - An incredible feat and a water polo first - Jadran Split has beat Jug to become the Croatian Water Polo Champion for the first time in the club's history! 

The decisive fifth match of the Croatian water polo championship finals was held between Jadran and Jug on Wednesday at the Poljud swimming pool in Split. 

All tickets for the final were sold out last week after the fourth final match. All 650 tickets in the stands were sold, and Jadran decided to install prefabricated stands to seat more. One was placed under the scoreboard, on the other side of the main stand, for 175 seats, and two smaller stands behind the goals, with about 100 seats on each side. In total, a maximum of 1,025 people were in attendance tonight. 

Before tonight the finals series was tied at 2-2, with both teams celebrating in their pools so far.

Split Jadran won the fifth, decisive game of the final series 11:8 (4:1, 0:2, 4:2, 3:3) and, in their sixth final, finally secured their first Croatian title!

Jadran has never been the champion of Croatia until now. Today, they created history. This triumph ended the 18-year fast of Split men's clubs in team sports (soccer, basketball, handball, water polo, volleyball). The last Croatian champion was Hajduk back in 2005.  

Jadran opened the match brilliantly and took a 4:0 lead. Jug responded and returned to the game, but in the third quarter, Jadran gained a three-goal advantage again. Finally, four minutes before the end of the game, Jadran secured all doubts of who would be the winner, leading 10:6. The final score was 11:8. 

The final's best player was Rino Burić, who scored four goals for Jadran. Marinić Kragić and Butić scored two each.

On the other side, Joković scored two goals for Jug, while Fatović, Vukojević, Biljaka, Kakaris, Lazić, and Žuvela scored one each.

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