RIO: The Australian Men’s Water Polo team have suffered a devastating blow in game four of their pool stage, going down to powerhouse Serbia 8-10.
In a toughly fought contest, the Aussies and Serbians were equally matched throughout the game, with scores locked 2-2 at the end of the first.
It was Australia that managed to take the narrow one point 5-4 lead at half time, but Serbia came back strong to again lock scores 6-6 at the end of the third.
With the game coming down to the final seconds, it was a strong Serbian outfit that managed to get convert the goals and show why they are considered one of the best in the world.
Team veterans Rhys Howden, Richie Campbell, Johnno Cotterill and Aaron Younger led the side from in front, with goal keeper Joel Dennerley making some huge saves in goal to ensure the Aussies were in with a fighting chance.
“Look it was not the outcome we were looking for, the boys played right till the end. But Serbia came home strong and credit to them – but we certainly put up a good fight today,” said Dennerley.
“They are the number one ranked team in the world for a reason, we always have a close match up with them and take the fight up to them.
“The last few years we’ve always had tough matches against them and today was another one of those.
“Our defence was solid, they have some quality players all across the park and that’s the way it goes,” he said.
The loss forces the Aussies into a must win game against Greece in the final of the pool stages which will take place on Sunday.
Full Time: AUS 8 SRB 10
Qtr Time Score (SRB-AUS): 2-2; 2-3; 2-1; 4-2
Aus Goal Scorters: Howden (1), Kayes (1), Swift (1), Younger (1), Roach (1), Campbell (1), Cotterill (2)
Goal Keeper: Joel Dennerley