Grimes hits four, but Great Britain outclassed by hosts Greece

Great Britain’s U20 women began their World Junior Championships campaign with a 27-4 (1-5, 2-8, 1-9, 0-5) loss to hosts Greece on Monday night in Volos.

With new rules being tested at the tournament – six players each in the water and squads of 11 – GB assistant coach Chloe Wilcox predicted the change would see a flurry of goals and judging by today’s opening Group A match she was right as Russia beat Japan 23-20 in a 43-goal thriller.

For Great Britain, Theo Nousios’ team were handed a difficult start as Greece are traditionally strong in this age group and were bronze medallists at the 2013 World Junior Championships, also held in Volos.

GB’s task was made even harder when the news emerged that center back Rhianne Oscroft was ruled out with an injury and the coaches will now assess her fitness prior to the game against Japan tomorrow.

Once the game against Greece got under way, the hosts were quick to display why they’re one of the favourites for the title as they raced into a 5-1 first quarter lead, with only City of Manchester’s Honor Grimes managing to find a way through for GB on extra.

Grimes completed her hat-trick late into the second quarter with two more well-taken goals on extra, but with the large, passionate home crowd buoyant, Greece continued to dominate and extended their advantage to 13-3 at the half.

In the third, GB refused to lay down and battled hard as Grimes added her fourth of the night, this time from distance, but again Greece pulled away to put the result beyond doubt at 22-4 going into the final period.

Five more unanswered goals for the hosts put a gloss on the final scoreline of 27-4 and Great Britain now turn their attentions to tomorrow’s crunch game against Japan.

Photo Credit: Volos 2015 Official Website.