Friday, 29 April 2022

Water Polo World League: Croatia Competing for 5th to 8th Place

April 29, 2022 - Italy defeated Croatia 8:6 in the water polo World League quarterfinals in Podgorica on Thursday. Croatia will now face France tonight at 5 pm. 

In the first game of the European final tournament of this season's World League, Italy defeated Croatia 8:6. With this result, Italy advanced to the semifinals, while the Barracudas will continue to compete for 5th to 8th place, reports HVS.

Fortunately, this tournament only acts as prep for upcoming major competitions such as the World Champs in Hungary and the European Championships in Split. 

Croatia did not lead for a single moment in the match and only managed to equalize once (Vukičević for 1:1 with an extra man).

Croatia struggled in the attack for the first three quarters and Italian goalkeeper Marco Del Lungo was brilliant in goal, recording 15 saves total. Croatia, on the other hand, had 31 attempts and only 6 goals. 

"Unfortunately, the beginning was not good for us. It’s not easy to play when you lose the whole game. You try to go back, that's where a lot of energy is spent," said Luka Bukić after the match. 

"In the end, we even came to just a few goals, but Italy still managed to score a goal that secured or confirmed their victory. The biggest problem today was certainly in the attack. We need to see where we all went wrong and how to fix it," he added. 

After 1:1 in the first 8 minutes, Italy took the lead at 4:1, 5:2, and then before the last quarter led 7:2. 

In the last quarter, Croatia woke up and even threatened to return completely. In the last five and a half minutes, Croatia used four consecutive extra man plays, and with the goals of Krapić, Burić, Vrlić, and Benić, they were only one goal behind or 7:6 for Italy. There are only 53 seconds left until the end, but the Italian left-hander, otherwise Argentine Gonzalo Echenique scored in the right corner of Marcelić's goal for the final 8:6 for Italy.

Coach Ivica Tucak left behind Jerko Marinić Kragić and Franko Lazić from the players he took to Podgorica. Croatia will play the next match in Podgorica on Friday, April 29 at 5 pm against France who lost to Montenegro on Thursday 

To read more about sports in Croatia, follow TCN’s dedicated page

Friday, 9 July 2021

Croatia Water Polo Team for Tokyo Announced

July 9, 2021- The Croatia water polo team for Tokyo has been announced by coach Ivica Tucak, two days earlier than originally announced. A look at the final team that will represent Croatia at the upcoming Olympic Games in Tokyo.

The Croatia water polo team coach, Ivica Tucak, has announced a list of 13 players he is counting on at the Olympic Games in Tokyo (July 23 - August 8). Croatia will open its Olympic appearance in Group B on July 25 against Kazakhstan, followed by Serbia, Spain, Australia, and Montenegro.

In relation to the 19 players that the coach has had so far in the preparations, goalkeeper Toni Popadić, center Luka Lozina, defenders Hrvoje Benić, Andrija Bašić, and Rino Burić, and forward Franko Lazić have dropped out.

"The decision fell on a slightly faster team. My vision is that with a player more in the outside line, we gain speed, and we will compensate the position of a defender with some players, if necessary with the center because we now have Obradović who can play at 2 meters. So, we have somewhat wider possibilities," said coach Tucak after the announcement.

"The decision is not easy, these are never simple. I thanked all the players because they all gave their maximum in these preparations. I especially thanked Burić and Popadić who were at the Olympic qualifiers in Rotterdam. Especially Popadić because if it weren't for his defense against Russia on penalties, we wouldn't be on our way to Tokyo today. This is what is safe for me, even after consultation with associates, the best that Croatia can offer in Tokyo," concluded coach Tucak.

Before Tokyo, the national team will still play in the tournament in Cagliari - Sardinia Cup. Croatia will play its first game on Friday at 20:30 against Russia, while on Saturday at 19:00, they will play against the hosts Italy.

After the end of the tournament, on Sunday, the national team members will go home and gather again in Zagreb on July 15, when they will continue their preparations until they leave for Tokyo.


1. Marko Bijač (Olympiacos)

2. Ivan Marcelić (Mladost) 


3. Luka Lončar (Pro Recco)

4. Josip Vrlić (without a club)


5. Andro Bušlje, kapetan (Olympiacos)

6. Marko Macan (Waspo 98 Hannover)

7. Paulo Obradović (Jug Adriatic osiguranje)


8. Lovre Miloš (without a club)

9. Maro Joković, zamjenik kapetana (without a club)

10. Xavi Garcia (Jug Adriatic osiguranja)

11. Ante Vukičević (Marseille)

12. Luka Bukić (Jadran Split)

13. Loren Fatović (Jug Adriatic osiguranje)

Source: HVS

To follow the latest sports news in Croatia, follow TCN's dedicated page.

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Tuesday, 18 June 2019

World League Super Final: Croatia Water Polo Crushes Kazakhstan in 1st Round

The Croatia water polo team convincingly defeated Kazakhstan 20-4 (5-2, 6-0, 3-0, 6-2) in the first round of the FINA World League Super Final in Belgrade. The champion of the tournament secures a spot at the Olympic Games in Tokyo next year, reports T.potal on June 18, 2019. 

Ante Vukičević scored four goals to be the most efficient player of the Croatia national team, while Andrija Bašić scored three goals. Hrvoje Benić two, Ivan Buljubašić, Anđelo Šetka, Lovro Miloš, and Loren Fatović each scored two goals, while by Luka Lončar, Maro Joković and Andro Bušlje scored one. Besides the Croatian goalkeepers, only Ivan Krapić did not score for Croatia.

Miras Aubakirov scored twice for Kazakhstan, while Medvedev and Shmider each scored one. 

In the second meeting of Group B, Serbia and Australia will play at 21:00, while in Group A, Hungary - Canada (15:45) and Japan - Spain (19:15) will meet. All the teams will play in the quarterfinals of this tournament.

The Croatia water polo team will play their second match of the tournament on Wednesday (21:00) against the host, Serbia, while Ivica Tucak & Co. will face Australia on Thursday (15:00) in the final round of Group B.

Last year's winner, Montenegro, did not make it to the final tournament this year. Hungary, who won the silver last year, came to Belgrade with their B team as they await the main spectacle this summer - the World Championships in Gwangju, South Korea. 

Serbia, the host of the tournament, has a total of 10 medals from this competition, 9 of which are gold. However, last year in Budapest, they were left without a medal. 

Spain won the bronze last year and came with their strongest squad to Belgrade. They also won the silver at the European Championship last year in Barcelona and won the bronze in Zagreb this year at the Europa Cup.

The Croatian ‘Barakudas’ won their last World League medal two years ago in Russia where they secured the bronze.

To read more about sport in Croatia, follow TCN’s dedicated page

Tuesday, 12 March 2019

Europa Cup: Croatia Water Polo Tops Serbia in Sisak

The Croatia water polo team secured a win in the final round of the Europa Cup Group D. Coach Ivica Tucak's side defeated and dominated their eternal rival, Serbia, with a result of 12:9 (1-0, 4-4, 5-2, 2-3). Croatia has thus won first place in its group in front of Serbia and Romania, and advances to the final tournament of Europa Cua, which will be played in Zagreb in April, reports on March 12, 2019. 

If the Croatian “Barracudas” are among the top four teams in the tournament, they will place in the finals of the World League in Belgrade this June. The World League winner will secure placement in the 2020 Olympic Games in Tokyo, while other routes to the Olympics will be available through the Water Polo World Championships in Guangzhou in July.

Otherwise, Croatia played a great match and held the lead from the very beginning, while their breakthrough of the game was the third quarter when they led 5:2.

The most effective player of the Croatian national team was Maro Joković, who scored four goals, while Marko Macan and Ante Vukičević added two, and Andro Bušlje, Lovre Miloš, Josip Vrlić, and Xavi Garcia each scored one. Dušan Mandić, Andrija Prlainović, Stefan Mitrović, and Filip Filipović each scored one goal for Serbia. 

Although the result of this game had almost no significance, considering both teams had already advanced to the finals of the tournament, it was imperative to see that Croatia is stable and in good form before the finals in Zagreb from April 5 to 7, 2019. 

To read more about sport in Croatia, follow TCN’s dedicated page

Tuesday, 24 July 2018

Croatia Water Polo Team Defeats Montenegro in Dramatic Finish for Euro Semis!

In a dramatic fight, the Croatia men’s water polo team defeated Montenegro to play in the European Championship semifinal match against Serbia

Saturday, 21 July 2018

Croatia Water Polo Team Advance to Quarterfinal of Euros in Barcelona!

The current world champions have played excellent water polo in the first round of the tournament. 

Wednesday, 18 July 2018

Croatia Water Polo Team Off to Stellar Start at Euros in Barcelona

The World Cup may be over, but Croatia's water polo team is playing in the European Championships in Barcelona!

Monday, 9 April 2018

Croatia Water Polo Team Overcomes Spain to Win First Ever LEN Europa Cup!

Croatia has become the first champion of the new water polo competition!

Sunday, 8 April 2018

Croatia Water Polo Team Defeats Serbia for Place in Europa Cup Final in Rijeka

Croatia will face Spain in the final tonight in Rijeka. 

Friday, 30 March 2018

World's Best Water Polo Player Sandro Sukno to Continue Career after Open Heart Surgery

Will the world's best water polo player Sandro Sukno be able to continue his brilliant career? The 27-year-old captain of Croatia returned from the United States where he underwent open heart surgery. Though Croatia’s captain had to put water polo on hold for now, what are his plans for the future?