Defending champions Greece were beaten by Hungary at the FINA Water Polo Under-19 World Championship in Prague ©Getty Images

Defending champions Greece are out of the International Swimming Federation (FINA) Water Polo Under-19 World Championship after a quarter-final defeat to Hungary, with Croatia, Italy and Montenegro also progressing to the semi-finals in the Czech capital Prague.

The Greeks had won this competition in Belgrade in 2017 and Kuwait City in 2019, but their hopes of a third title in a row were ended in an 11-9 defeat to Hungary.

The Hungarians outscored their opponents by a point in each of the first three quarters, with Greece’s four goals to Hungary’s three in the final quarter not enough to rescue their tournament.

In the first quarter-final of the day, the two countries who lost to Greece in the two most recent finals went head-to-head as 2017 runners-up Croatia took on 2019 silver medallists Serbia.

Serbia won the championship in 2011 and 2015, while Croatia claimed gold in 1997 and 2009.

The scorer were level at six apiece at the halfway stage, before Serbia took both of the final two quarters 3-2 to progress 12-10.

Italy, Bronze medallists last time this event ran, reached the last four with a penalty shootout win against Spain.

A tight contest had finished 7-7 at the end of normal time before the Italians triumphed 4-2 on penalties.

In the day’s final quarter-final, Montenegro moved one step closer to their first FINA Water Polo Under-19 World Championship medal as an independent nation with a 17-5 thrashing of the United States.

Serbia and Montenegro won back-to-back titles in 2003 and 2005.

Classification matches also took place today.

In the matches to help determine ninth to 12th place, Germany came from 2-0 and 6-3 behind to beat Russia 8-7, while Brazil recorded an emphatic 16-5 win against South Africa.

In the 13th to 20th classification matches, hosts Czech Republic hammered Uzbekistan 19-10, Argentina saw off Slovakia 9-3, while Kazakhstan overcame Egypt 7-5.