100 Days Until Rio Olympic Games
Today marks 100 days to go until the Rio Olympic Games Opening Ceremony, as our Aussie Sharks and Stingers squad ramp up their preparations.
With the count down well and truly on, we have your ultimate guide to all things water polo for the Rio Olympics – plus some facts and history to keep Aussie fans in the loop.
Follow Australia’s Women’s and Men’s water polo team on their #RoadToRio on our social Facebook, Instagram and Twitter accounts – @WaterPoloWA and @WaterpoloAus.
WATER POLO IN RIO
Water polo at the Olympic Games is comprised of a men’s and women’s competition. Eight teams play in the women’s competition while 12 compete in the men’s division.
In the men’s event, the qualifying teams are divided into two pools of six for a round-robin preliminary heat. The top four teams from each pool advance to the quarter-finals, and the quarter-finals winners advance to the medal rounds.
The women’s teams play a full round-robin preliminary heat, with the top four teams advancing to the medal rounds. The four teams failing to advance, play to determine fifth, sixth, seventh and eighth place.
PRELIMINARY: Maria Lenk Aquatics Centre was constructed for the 2007 Pan American Games and will be used for diving, water polo and synchronised swimming at the Rio 2016 Olympic Games. The venue is owned by Rio’s city government and managed by the Brazilian Olympic Committee. After the Games, it will be integrated into the Olympic Training Centre (OTC).
FINALS: The Olympic Aquatics Stadium will be in the heart of Barra Olympic Park, 10 minutes from the Olympic and Paralympic Village. It will host swimming and water polo during the Olympic Games. The water polo matches will commence at the Olympic Aquatics Stadium from the commencement of the quarter finals.
The schedule with times will be released in May 2016 – below outlines the draw for the preliminary rounds.
6 August – AUS v Brazil 8 August – AUS v Hungary
10 August – AUS v Japan 12 August – AUS v Serbia
14 August – AUS v Greece 16 August – Quarter Finals
18 August – Semi Finals 20 August – Final
9 August – AUS v Russia 11 August – AUS v Italy
13 August – AUS vBrazil 15 August – Quarter Finals
17 August – Semi Finals 19 August – Final
RIO FAREWELL FUNCTION – Save the date
Want your opportunity to farewell the our women’s and men’s teams before they go to Rio? Water Polo Australia is hosting a Farewell Function in Sydney – so put the date in your calendar and stay tuned as tickets will go on sale shortly.
The Olympic Games are back on Channel 7, with all the water polo action to be presented by sports commentator Bill Woods and water polo Olympic gold medalist Debbie Watson.
Want to know what our athletes will be wearing in Rio? Check out the adidas uniform launch – featuring our own Holly Lincoln-Smith – Click here.
WATER POLO AT THE OLYMPICS – HISTORY
Water polo is the oldest Olympic team sport, contested continuously at every modern Olympic Games since Paris 1900.
Women’s water polo made its debut in Sydney 2000. Much of the credit for its inclusion on the Olympic program can be credited to lobbying led by Australia, the United States, Canada and Holland.
WATER POLO AUSTRALIA – OUR OLYMPIC GAMES RECORD
The gold medal winning performance by the Australian women at their home Olympics in 2000 is the overwhelming highlight for Australia in this sport. In a nail-biting finish, Australia’s Yvette Higgins scored the winning goal with 1.2 seconds left on the clock.
In Beijing 2008, after a series of close calls for the women’s team to miss the gold medal game, they beat Hungary by one goal in a thrilling match to win bronze.
In 2012, Australia’s women’s team went agonisingly close to making the gold medal playoff at the London Games as they went down to eventual champions USA in extra time in the semi finals. They bounced back strongly to secure their second straight bronze medal defeating Hungary 13-11.
The Australian Women’s Water Polo team are named the Aussie Stingers. You can follow them via #AussieStingers.
Australia first sent a men’s water polo team to London in 1948 and one of the team members, Les McKay, carried the Australian flag in the Opening Ceremony. The 1948 water polo team was the first to represent Australia in a mainstream Olympic team sport.
Australia’s men have not won a medal in water polo with the best placing being fifth at 1984 Los Angeles and 1992 Barcelona.
At the London 2012 Games the men’s water polo team had a narrow loss in the quarter-final to eventual bronze medalists Serbia. They are targeting a big jump on their seventh at these Games.
The Australian Men’s Water Polo team are named the Aussie Sharks. You can follow them via #AussieSharks.
Australia’s Olympic water polo medal tally is:
3 (1 gold, 0 silver, 2 bronze)
Originally posted by Water Polo Australia.