Spain has conquered for the first time in its history the World League Superfinal title women’s water polo, and it has done so by beating Hungary in an epic final that was decided in a penalty shootout that, due to the enormous success of the two teams, was extended to 7-8.
It was a magnificent hand by Martina Tarre which stopped Greta Gurisatti’s last shot, thus settling the triumph of the national team.
As happened in the European League Final, also held in Tenerifethe confrontation between the Hungarians and the Spanish was decided on penalties and in the same way, it was concluded with Spain rising to the top of the podium thanks to the best success from five meters.
The equality throughout the match could not be greater and it is that the four periods of the match ended in a draw (3-3, 3-3, 3-3 and 2-2), and except in the final stretch in which Spain took two of advantage (9-11), in At no time was there a significant distance between both sets.
Panna Pocze scored the first two for her team and Anni Espar and Bea Ortiz countered for Spain (2-2). Rita Keszthelyi made it 3-2 but Paula Leiton adjusted again to leave the first quarter at 3-3. In the second round, Spain took the initiative with a shot from Irene González, which was answered by the Hungarians Parker and Pocze for a new turn (5-4). With more successes from Ortiz and González, the hosts hit back with the intention of going into the break with some air, but a goal from Keszthelyi at the buzzer brought the tables back (6-6).
González continued his run, although Dorottya Szilagy stepped in to put Hungary ahead with two goals in a row (8-7). The incessant push and pull continued with a new exchange in which Spain added thanks to goals from Cristina Nogue and Paula Leiton (9-9).
With a break of more than five minutes due to a VAR review, the match cooled down at the beginning of the last round, but one of the most decisive scorers in Spain was quietly preparing to appear at the key moment of the game.
With two whiplashes in a row, Judit Forca placed Spain two ahead with two and a half minutes to go (9-11)However, Leimeter scored with 1:18 on the clock (10-11) and after a vibrant last play with several rebounds, Gurisatti forced extra time in the last second of the match (11-11).
The penalty shootout for Spain began with doubts with the errors of Espar and Ortiz that left the rival ahead (1-0), however, two saves by Martina Tarre led the hosts to take the initiative after Elena Ruiz made it 2-2.
The wheel passed with the maximum tension and the maximum success on the part of the two teams until a miraculous hand from Tarre stopped Gurisatti’s shot to leave the account at 18-19.
18. Hungary. Alda Magyari, Dorottya Szilagyi (3), Vanda Valyi, Greta Gurisatti (3), Geraldine Mahieu, Rebecca Parkes (1), Zsuzsanna Mate (1), Rita Keszthelyi (5), Dora Leimeter (1), Panna Pocze (2) , Kamilla Farago, Kata Hajdu (2), Boglarka Neszmely.
19.Spain. Laura Ester, Cristina Nogue (1), Anni Espar (2), Bea Ortiz (3), Nona Pérez, Irene González (3), Elena Ruiz (2), Pili Peña, Judith Forca (4), Paula Camus, Maica García , Paula Leiton (4), Martina Terre.
partial: 3-3, 3-3, 3-3, 2-2, 7-8.