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Water Polo, Women

Date16 – 23 September 2000
StatusOlympic
LocationSydney International Aquatic Centre, Olympic Park, Sydney, New South Wales / Ryde Aquatic Leisure Centre, Ryde, New South Wales
Participants78 from 6 countries
FormatRound-robin pools advanced teams to classification matches.

This was the first ever Olympic water polo tournament for women. The last two World Champions had been Italy (1998) and Hungary (1994), although both Italy and the Netherlands had been on the podium both years, Italy also winning the European title in 1995, 1997, and 1999. But Italy was not one of the six teams in Sydney, having placed fourth at the Olympic Qualifying Tournament. The qualified teams were the host Australians, the top European and American teams from the 1999 World Cup (Netherlands and Canada), the top two from the qualifying tournament (USA and Russia), and the best Asian team from the qualifying tournament (Kazakhstan, which finished sixth).

The round-robin served to eliminate Canada and Kazakhstan, with Australia winning four of five matches and taking first seed into the semi-finals. After the round-robin every match was close and was decided by only one goal. Australia and the United States eliminated Russia and the Netherlands, 7-6 and 6-5, respectively. The final match saw the USA leading 2-1 at the half. With only 13 seconds left in the match, American Brenda Villa scored to tie the match 3-3, but with only 1.3 seconds remaining Australia’s Yvette Higgins scored after a foul and a free throw-in, giving Australia the gold medal, 4-3.

PosCompetitor(s)NOC
1AustraliaAUSGold
Naomi CastleJoanne FoxBridgette GustersonSimone HankinYvette HigginsKate HooperBronwyn SmithGail MillerMelissa MillsDebbie WatsonLiz WeekesDanielle WoodhouseTaryn Woods
2United StatesUSASilver
Robin BeauregardEllen EstesCourtney JohnsonEricka LorenzHeather MoodyMo O'TooleBernice OrwigNicolle PayneHeather PetriKathy SheehyCoralie SimmonsJulie SwailBrenda Villa
3Russian FederationRUSBronze
Galina RytovaIrina TolkunovaMariya KorolyovaMarina AkobiyaNataliya KutuzovaSofya KonukhSvetlana KuzinaTatyana PetrovaYekaterina AnikeyevaYekaterina VasilyevaYelena SmurovaYelena TokunYuliya Petrova
4NetherlandsNED
Hellen BoeringDaniëlle de BruijnEdmée HiemstraKarin KuipersIngrid LeijendekkerPatricia MegensMarjan op den VeldeMirjam OverdamHeleen PeerenboomKarla PluggeCarla QuintGillian van den BergEllen van der Weijden-Bast
5CanadaCAN
Marie-Luc ArpinIsabelle AugerJohanne BéginCora CampbellMelissa CollinsMarie-Claude DeslièresValérie DionneAnn DowSue GardinerWaneek Horn-MillerSandra LizéJosée MarsolaisJana Salat
6KazakhstanKAZ
Rezeda AleyevaAnastasiya BorodaIrina BorodavkoSvetlana BuravovaNataliya GalkinaYekaterina GerzanichTatyana GubinaNataliya IgnatyevaAsel DzhakayevaSvetlana KorolyovaOlga LeshchukLarisa OlkhinaYuliya Pyryseva

Round-Robin (16 – 20 September 2000)

Round-robin pool.

PosCompetitor(s)NOCWinsTiesLossesPointsGoals ForGA
1AustraliaAUS40183520
2United StatesUSA31173630
3NetherlandsNED30262726
4Russian FederationRUS21253629
5CanadaCAN12243334
6KazakhstanKAZ00502351

Match #1 AUS 9 – 2KAZ
Match #2 CAN 7 – 7RUS
Match #3 USA 6 – 4NED
Match #4 AUS 6 – 3RUS
Match #5 CAN 8 – 8USA
Match #6 NED 8 – 6KAZ
Match #7 NED 5 – 4AUS
Match #8 USA 7 – 5RUS
Match #9 CAN 10 – 3KAZ
Match #10 AUS 7 – 6USA
Match #11 RUS 15 – 6KAZ
Match #12 NED 7 – 4CAN
Match #13 AUS 9 – 4CAN
Match #14 RUS 6 – 3NED
Match #15 USA 9 – 6KAZ

Semi-Finals (22 September 2000)

Single-elimination.

Match #1 AUS 7 – 6RUS
Match #2 USA 6 – 5NED

Final Round (22 – 23 September 2000)

Medal round.

Match 1/2 AUS 4 – 3USA
Match 3/4 RUS 4 – 3NED
Match 5/6 CAN 9 – 8KAZ