On a huge weekend of Australian Sport, we managed to squeeze in a chat with Water Polo Australia's shot stopped Anthony Hrysanthos, fresh from a silver medal at the FINA World Cup and signing for Greek powerhouse team Vouliagmeni (Ναυτικός Όμιλος Βουλιαγμένης (Επίσημο Προφίλ) about his rapid rise.
DS: Thanks for chatting to us Anthony, firstly congratulations on the historic silver medal with the Aussie Sharks at the World Cup. What was it like to be part of such an groundbreaking team and result?
AH: It truly was incredible to be part of the most successful Australian Men's team in history at a major event. The team was extremely confident with the preparations and there was a very positive vibe throughout the whole tour and the tournament that we could achieve something special. We had sat down as a team earlier in the year and set out the goal of medalling at the World Cup and it was very rewarding and satisfying to walk away with a silver medal, something I will remember and cherish for the rest of my life.
DS: With only one goalkeeper playing on game day in the new FINA rules of 11 players, what effect did that have on your preparation for games and when did coach Fatovic advise on his selection for each game?
AH: Joel and I have developed an extremely positive relationship throughout not only this tour, but for some time, as we are training partners back home at NSWIS. Knowing that only one of us could be selected each game pushed us to train harder and this was beneficial for us both individually and for the overall team performance. Elvis understood the difficulty of applying the new rules and was positive and ensured that we had enough notice to adequately prepare.
DS: Off the back of your performance in Berlin at the World Cup, you have recently announced you have signed with Greek side Vouliagmeni, a club with an incredibly strong history in European water polo. Tell us how that came about and your excitement to be heading there this season.
AH: The possibility of playing overseas was something that was first floated past me after the National League Finals in May this year. I had received some interest from a few teams in Europe but was approached by Vouliagmeni a couple months ago. The club has a strong history of success both in Greece and Europe and knowing that they have some of the best facilities in the world, unlimited pool and gym access and a very competitive team for the upcoming season, it was an easy decision to make. It is exciting to be able to play internationally as it has always been a dream of mine to be a professional athlete.
DS: What are you most looking forward to about playing in the Greek league and Champions League?
AH: The best part for me is being able to play week in and week out with and against some of the best players in the world. As a goalkeeper, I think it is crucial to be exposed to the 'European' style of shooting as it differs significantly to that of Australia and I hope that this experience will help me reach my goals of competing at the Olympic Games.
- Hardest shooter to save you have played against/with: Pietro Figlio
- Game Day breakfast: Scrambled eggs on toast with avocado
- Favourite place to play: Margaret Island, Budapest
- Sporting idol growing up: Michael Jordan
- Least favourite pool in Australia to play (and why): Dawn Fraser Baths - always get a bit nervous when something brushes past your legs in the water