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Kicking off the FINA World Women’s Junior Championships in Funchal

Photo: Federacao Portuguesa de Natacao/Facebook

The FINA Women’s U20 Championships has started in Funchal, the capital of the archipelago Madeira. The archipelago, which is the autonomous region of Portugal, is located 520 km from the African continent and 1000 km from Portugal and Europe.

Sixteen teams from all of the continents take part. The teams are split into four groups. The competition system is the same as at the FINA senior championships. The group-winners will qualify for the quarterfinals, the teams which take 2nd and 3rd places in their respective groups will play in the crossover round.

The first day saw a few thrilling matches.

Hungary edged out Australia 10-9. The derby of Group B, the Netherlands-Spain match ended with no winner (12-12).

The surprise of the day was produced by Japan. The USA-Japan match USA ended with no winner (11-11) either. Moreover, the Japanese were very close to a win. After being 3-7 down at halftime, Japan started climbing back and it had an 11-9 lead with 1:45 remaining on the clock. But, the USA Team managed to score two goals and saved a point.

Russia, the gold medal winner at the previous Women’s U19 World Championships, held in Greece two years ago, defeated host Portugal convincingly 24-3.

World Women’s U20 Championships, Day 1

Group A

Hungary – Australia 10:9 (4:2, 3:2, 2:1, 1:4)

Read a detailed article here.

USA – Japan 11:11 (3:1, 4:2, 1:5, 3:3)

Group B

Netherlands – Spain 12:12 (2:4, 4:3, 3:3, 3:2)

Brazil – Kazakhstan 15:10 (2:4, 4:2, 4:3, 5:1)

Group C

South Africa – Italy 10:16 (3:2, 1:6, 2:3, 4:5)

Portugal – Russia 3:24(0:8, 1:4, 1:6, 1:6)

Group D

Greece – New Zealand 15:9 (3:3, 6:2, 2:2, 4:2)

Canada – China 9:12 (1:1, 1:5, 3:2, 4:4)