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September 20, 2017

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Final Universiade gold goes to Serbia

The final 2017 Summer Universiade gold medal was decided in the pool Wednesday, with Serbia defeating Russia 15-4 in the water polo final. For Serbia's head coach Dejan Savic, it was icing on the cake after leading his team to gold at the Rio Games. Savic said his team had performed excellently, especially when taking the offense.

For its Universiade squad, Serbia had deployed a large number of newcomers. According to Savic, only two members had been part of the winning Rio team, with the rest being up-and-comers who had their eyes on the 2020 Tokyo Summer Olympics as well as the 2024 Games in Paris.

With water polo being a team sport, it was critical that team members be humble and willing to learn from more senior players, he said. While actions such as seeking advice from these players may seem small, Savic, said, knowledge and skills accumulated in this way would lead to great success.

In the penultimate Universiade contest, Italy defeated France 10-2 to take home the bronze. It was a good result but still somewhat disappointing for Italy, which had aimed for gold this year after winning silver at the 2015 Gwangju Universiade. After losing to Russia in the semifinals, the Italian team had reviewed its performance by watching their game, and established a practical strategy for the bronze medal match. The team's tactics proved effective, as it got out to a 5-1 lead at half time and kept that score line in proportion for the rest of the contest.

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