KUWAIT CITY, Dec 17: Kuwait National Water Polo Team was defeated 7-17 by the Russian counterpart in their first match, slipping from 13th to 20th place in the ongoing water polo championship for players under 20 years old in Kuwait sponsored by the National Assembly Speaker Marzouq Al-Ghanim.
Players Muhammad Ashkenani, Mubarak Dashti, Abdulrahman Al-Wazzan, Soud Al-Utaibi and Abdullah Jassem scored for Kuwait. The current round witnessed the Egyptian team winning 11-7 against Iran, while China defeated Uzbekistan 18-10, and South Africa nailed Brazil 7-6.
Kuwait is scheduled to meet Uzbekistan on Wednesday at 9.20 am in the classification round of 17th to 20th place. Russia/China and South Africa/Egypt will meet in the classification round of 13th to 16th place.
The quarter final matches of the top teams of the groups will be played Wednesday. Serbia tops Group A and Spain Group B, while Italy is ahead in Group C and Greece emerged with the highest points in Group D.
In the meantime, Serbia is scheduled to meet the winner between Hungary and Montenegro, Spain will play with the winner of the winner of the match between Croatia and New Zealand, while Italy will face the champion of Japan/Australia match, and Greece will rub shoulders with the victor of Canada and the United States of America match.
Assistant head of technical affairs for Kuwait Swimming Association Ali Al-Enezi said the team did their best in their first international participation after a long ban, which negatively affected the performance of players. He reiterated the players are not free completely, because they’re students and taking exams right now.
The ongoing Water Polo World Championships for players under the age of 20 will continue until Dec 19 at Nasser Al-Muhammad swimming pools complex within the premises of Al-Nasser Sports Club in Kuwait. The opening ceremony took place on Thursday Dec 12 with the participation of 830 players and administrative staff, in addition to 280 companions of the participating teams from 20 countries. About 8 to 10 contests are scheduled to be played each day.
Earlier, the nine-member Executive Office of the Federation International de Natation (FINA) held a meeting at the Crowne Plaza Hotel in Kuwait on the sidelines of the Water Polo World Championship for youth under the age of 20 happening at the Sheikh Nasser Al-Muhammad Swimming Pools Complex.
The meeting was part of preparations for the Board of Directors of FINA conference held a day later to review the recommendations and suggestions of the 25-member Board of Directors authorized to issue official decisions. The meeting discussed a long outline of recommendations needed for setting a new and integrated development plan for water sports and swimming, while specifying criteria of the water sports to be adopted in the upcoming Olympic Games, Tokyo 2020.