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Irek Zinnurov: The Serbian team is one of the strongest ones in the world

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15.01.2014, 16:45 Sport
Players and coaches of the Russian and Serbian national water polo teams, which the day before played the Men’s Water Polo World League match at the Aquatics Palace, have shared their impressions of the game. As we reported earlier, the game ended with a score of 12-8 in favour of Serbia.

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“We have been gearing up in earnest for this match. The most important thing was to win it by all means, and we did it. Now we will be preparing for the final,” said the captain of the Serbian team, Zivko Gocic. “I would not say that we won the game very easily. At first we thought that it would be a very hard match. After two periods, we already had a 2-3 point margin, and it became easier for us to play.” The Russian team has a lot of talented players, said Zivko Gocic.

While speaking with reporters, the Russian captain Sergey Lisunov tried to explain the reasons for his team’s defeat. “In the second period, when the judges imposed exclusion fouls both on us and them, the opponent took advantage of this opportunity, and we could not catch up with them after that. This team is very strong. One game is not enough to close such a gap,” he said.

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The celebrated water polo player, Olympic medallist Irek Zinnurov was one of the assistant coaches for the Russian national team. For his part, he stressed that the opponents were quite strong, but the experience of playing with such national teams is something of real value. “Serbia has one of the top teams, maybe even the strongest one in the world. I think that the teams played very well today. We need to overcome times when we underestimate our abilities, our strength. The more we play with teams of this level, the better we become,” he said.

Russia's next match in the Men’s Water Polo World League – against Romania – is scheduled for February 11. And on April 15, the Russian water polo team will have another game against Serbia, this time it will be played on the opponents’ ground. A Group A winner of the European Preliminary Round qualifies for the World League Super Final, which is due to be held this summer in Kazakhstan.

20 volunteers worked at the match, 16 of which were involved in event services, aiding spectators, and 4 assisted on the field of play. It is the first time that the boys and girls made a public appearance wearing Kazan 2015 volunteer uniforms.

Media Department of Kazan 2013 Executive Directorate