/ Olympics

Croatia 8-6 Italy

Updated: Sunday, 12 Aug 2012 17:46 | Comments

Goalkeeper Josip Pavic of Croatia celebrates after winning gold
Goalkeeper Josip Pavic of Croatia celebrates after winning gold

Croatia secured their first men's water polo Olympic gold medal with victory over Italy in the final this afternoon.

The Balkan outfit have been the outstanding side of the London 2012 tournament, with eight wins from eight matches, and end it as worthy champions.

Their dominance in defence was too much for the Italians, who are reigning world champions.

Croatia picked up a silver medal in Atlanta in 1996, and were part of former-Yugoslavia when they won three golds in the 1960s and 1980s.

However, since gaining independence in 1991, top spot on the podium has eluded them - until now.

They were not favourites coming into the Olympic tournament, but their devastating displays in Group A and the latter stages of the tournament have lit up the competition.

There were wild celebrations in the stands as well as the pool when the final whistle was blown, with players holding up flags in the water and pushing their coaches into the water.

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Country Total
USA 45 27 30 102
China 38 28 23 89
Great Britain 29 17 19 65
Russia 25 25 32 82
South Korea 13 8 7 28
Ireland 1 1 3 5
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