Wednesday, April 18, 2007

Ciro Kovacic, Yugoslavia: The epic Goalkeeper

Olympic Games: 1948, 1952, 1956 (silver); European Cups: 3 (1948, 1950 bronze; 1954 silver); Captain 56 times in 87 matches played for Yugoslavia National Team as goalkeeper; European Championships: 1947.Ciro Kovacic is the first athlete from Yugoslavia to be honored by induction to the Hall of Fame. He was captain for 56 of the 87 matches he played for the Yugoslavian National team. He was acclaimed as "Best Goalkeeper" by a vote of his peers; the players, referees and coaches from all the teams present at the European Championships of 1950 and 1954, of the Olympic games of 1952 and 1956 and almost everything in between. Born July 5, 1925, in Sibenik, Yugoslavia, he started his swimming career in 1934 as a breaststroke swimmer in Rijeka. His swimming-water polo careers were interrupted between 1941-45 by the German occupation during World War II. He served with the Partisans fighting for his country from 1943-1946. Kovacic resumed his water polo career as goalkeeper on the National team from 1945 until he retired because of business interests in 1957.

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