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17.07.2013, 14:36
Major reinforcement for Rostov-Don
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Russian club expanding their squad for Women's EHF Champions League qualification challenge
 

Major reinforcement for Rostov-Don

Russian side Rostov-Don have bolstered their squad in an effort to reach the Group Matches stage of the Women’s EHF Champions League.

The Russian league runners-up announced three new signings transfers, with Ukrainian wingers Viktoriya Borshchenko and Iuliia Managarova and Croatian back court Kristina Elez set to join the club.

“I’m sure that Iuliia, Viktoriya and Kristina will be able to show their ability in Rostov-Don. We have been watching them for a long time and all three girls have great spirit and strong character,” said club director Anton Revenko.

“The new members of our handball family are highly professional players, who have proven their level. However our transfer campaign is not finished yet.

“We have also extended contracts with Iryna Shybanova, Marina Yartseva and Elena Slivinskaya,” confirmed Revenko.

26-year-old Kristina Elez began her career at HC Podravka  Vegeta. She is a six-time Croatian league champion and five-time cup winner.

In 2009 she moved to Metz, where she won the French league and cup, as well as reaching the semi-final of the Cup Winners’ Cup during the 2010/11 season. The summer of 2011 saw her move to Slovenian champion RK Krim Mercator she moved once again last season to Hungarian team ETV-Erdi VSE.

Left winger Viktoriya Borshchenko played for Ukrainian sides Dnepryanka Kherson, Galychanka Lvov, HC Smart (2009/10 league champion) and then won three Russian championships in a row with Dinamo Volgograd.

“This is new challenge for me. I’m looking for new goals and want to get another championship title. Of course, I understand how important playing in Europe is for my new club and although it will be very difficult to qualify for the Champions League, I’m sure that every team can be beaten,” said 27-year-old Borshchenko.

No easy road to the Group Matches

Rostov-Don must overcome French side Fleury Loiret and the winner of Salerno (Italy) and Vardar (FYR Macedonia) if they wish to progress to the Group Matches phase of the Women’s EHF Champions League.

“Our opposition in the semi-final, Fleury, have developed a strong team and will be very serious opponent. I admit Vardar will be very strong, even the Italian team, which looks a bit weaker, has the advantage of playing at home,” added Revenko.

There is a potential reunion on the cards in the qualification tournament, as Montenegrin Ana Djokic left Rostov-Don at the end of last seasons to join Vardar and could meet her old teammates a lot sooner than expected.

Other players to leave the club were Tatiana Lavrenyuk, Oxana Tsvirinko, Maria Garbuz (all to Kuban Krasnodar) and Elvira Zhitlova has retired.

Right winger Iuliia Managarova began her career in her hometown of Krivoi Rog in the Dnepropetrovsk region of Ukraine.

The 24-year-old, known for being one of the fastest players in Europe, won three domestic championships with Smart/Sparta and added a further three titles in Romania with Oltchim Rm. Valcea and reached the semi-finals of Europe’s elite competition on two occasions.

The Ukrainian international was pleased with the outcome of the organizer for the qualification tournament.

“It’s good that we’ll play qualification in Italy, because none of the three favourites, Rostov-Don, Fleury and Vardar, will have the advantage of home support,” said Managarova.

Italian club Salerno confirmed their right to host the qualification tournament. All games will be held in the “Palasele” hall in Eboli, near Salerno.


TEXT: Igor Grachov / cor
 
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