The Aussie Stingers women’s water polo team have opened their 2014 FINA World League Intercontinental Cup with a 13-10 win over arch rivals China.
The Australian women’s water polo team beat arch rivals China 13-10 on Tuesday in their opening game of the 2014 FINA World League Intercontinental Cup in California.
Following a 12-month hiatus from the Aussie Stingers, Western Australia’s dual Olympic bronze medallist Gemma Beadsworth was instrumental in the victory, scoring four goals with three of them coming in the last quarter.
Other standout players for Australia were Victorian Rowie Webster, who captained the side, and Queensland’s FINA World Championship silver medallist Ashleigh Southern, who both scored three goals. Other scorers for the Stingers were Sophie Smith, Keesja Gofers and Jayde Appel.
The Stingers trailed 3-4 at quarter-time and 3-5 soon after the first interval, before fighting back to equalise at 5-5 at the main break. A goal to Sophie Smith on the counter and a double to Webster gave Australia an 8-7 lead at the final exchange, with Beadsworth’s fourth-term hat-trick sealing the deal for Australia.
Stingers assistant coach Eddie Denis said the game lived up to expectations and that experience was the key to victory.
“We expected this game to be tough and it was,” Dennis said.
“Our experience was evidenced in the final quarter as our senior players took control of the game to take out the win by three goals. However, it’s early days as a team and there’s plenty to still work on.”
The Stingers’ next game will be against Brazil who thrashed Venezuela 12-2 in the first game of the tournament.