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01.03.2011, 12:16
No more milk and honey
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Ana Đokić, pivot of Budućnost, wants her team to improve in Ljubljana.
 

No more milk and honey

Budućnost finished the Group Matches of the EHF Women's Champions League with six victories in six games. In the Main Round, however, the Montenegrin champions were defeated two times in their three first games. After a one-goal defeat in Vâlcea against Oltchim, Budućnost also lost in Spain, with five goals to Itxako.

In that game, for the first time in this EHF Women’s Champions League season, Budućnost’s pivot Ana Đokić did not score any goal. In an interview with ehfCL.com she talked about the form low of the Podgorica team in the Main Round of the EHF Women's Champions League.

ehfCL.com: Budućnost had a very bad match with Itxako, referring rather to the way you played than the final result. What went wrong?

Ana Đokić: I think that in that game we rather saw us making mistakes than it was a victory on Itxako’s merit. A lot of things that we had planned for the game did not work out. Again we had an evening with quite poor scoring, and in defence we played our worst game of this season. On the other hand, Itxako played really well, they managed to take advantage of our mistakes and thus deserved the victory.

ehfCL.com: After a narrow defeat against Oltchim followed by a victory over Krim, how was such a low performance in the third match possible?

Ana Đokić: I absolutely did not expect that. To be honest, I cannot explain why we performed so poorly. Itxako did not surprise us, but they do have a style of playing that is different from not only our style but also the styles of Oltchim and Krim. We were trying to be prepared for their playing style. But as you could see in the game, we did not manage to compete with the home team.

ehfCL.com: Budućnost is not playing at the same level like in the Group Matches, where you had six victories and were named one of the favourites for the title. Do you feel pressure, does that maybe affect the Main Round performance?

Ana Đokić: Frankly, I have not been thinking about that pressure, especially not about public pressure. I am not the kind of person to do so. In my opinion, pressure comes with good results. The better results we achieve, the bigger the pressure grows. I would not in any way want to compare the Group Matches stage with the Main Round. We talked about that at the end of the Group Matches, at a time when everybody was saying that everything was “milk and honey”, meaning that we were the best. That is not right because the teams qualified for the Main Round are not there by accident. The further in the competition you go, the stronger the opponents are. That’s the pressure we have, because we play with all the strong teams. It might be true that we played better in the first phase of the competition, but we can’t compare that with for example Dinamo and Itxako.

ehfCL.com: No Group 1 team has won an away game yet, all four team still have chances to go to the semi-finals. Can Budućnost win the next game in Ljubljana?

Ana Đokić: Well, this is the last chance for an away victory, since we have only home games left afterwards. Standings in the group are still open, all teams have a chance left. I believe that we can surprise Krim, but not with a game like the one in Spain. With such a performance we could not surprise anyone. In fact, in Spain, we surprised ourselves. We must be prepared, be ready for anything. The first two places in the group might be decided by goal difference, which implies that every goal is important. The fact that all teams in our group so far have only won home games shows that the group is balanced, with four good teams. Everything could be decided by minor details, as it is always the case in major competitions with good teams.

The away match between last year's EHF Cup Winner’s Buducnost and the Slovenian champions Krim Mercator in the Main Round Group 1 will be broadcast as a free-of-charge live web stream on ehfTV.com.

EHF Women’s Champions League, Main Round, Round 4
Friday, 04 March 2011, 19:30 hrs (local time)
RK Krim Mercator (SLO) vs. Budućnost Podgorica (MNE)

ehfTV.com is the official Internet TV platform of the European Handball Federation and offers free live streaming as well as a video on demand service.

 


TEXT: Saša Jončić
 
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