WATER POLO Preview: Croatia and Hungary favored (?) in men’s World Cup

The 16th edition of the quadrennial FINA Water Polo World Cup is starting in Berlin (GER), with Serbia trying to win its fourth title in a row (sort of). There are eight teams playing in two groups:

∙ Group A: Australia, Germany, Hungary, Japan
∙ Group B: Croatia, Serbia, South Africa, United States

Serbia won this tournament in 2014, in 2010 and as Serbia and Montenegro, in 2006. The other power players have been Hungary and Croatia: Hungary won silver in 2014, 2006 and 2002, and Croatia won bronze in 2014 and silver in 2010.

Each team plays three round-robin games and the top-ranked team from each group will play the fourth-ranked team from the other group.

In the 2018 FINA Water Polo World League, Montenegro – which is not in this tournament – won its second title, defeating Hungary in the final (13-11), with Spain third (also not in this tournament) and Japan fourth.

The FINA draw had Croatia and Hungary as the top seeds, but what about Serbia?

Round-robin play continues through the 13th; the playoffs begin on the 14th and continue through Sunday. Look for scores here.