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24.03.2014, 09:44
Czech Republic aim for points against European titleholders
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PREVIEW: A strong defence shall lead the women’s national team to success in the Women’s EHF EURO Qualification double-header against Montenegro
 

Czech Republic aim for points against European titleholders

Czech Republic’s women’s national team, currently ranked first in Group 3, is looking forward to their qualification double-header against EHF EURO 2012 champions, Montenegro.

Both teams collected the maximum of four points in the first two rounds in the group. Czech Republic beat Portugal 35:20 on home court and won at Poland 22:19. Montenegro won away at Portugal and beat Poland on home court.

The first leg takes place in Czech Republic’s ‘handball capital’, Most, on Wednesday, 26 March. The reverse fixture is scheduled for Sunday, 30 March.

"People in Most are crazy about handball. The atmosphere in Montenegro will be specific, there is nothing comparable to Balkan atmosphere that awaits us there, but our fans can be absolutely brilliant in Most. We hope we can satisfy them," says head coach Jan Basny.

"Most made Czech Republic's handball more popoular in past years. We won important matches there in the qualification for EHF EURO 2012 as well as against Iceland in the play-offs for the World Championship 2013. It is our true home."

The last head-to-head meeting to date in the play-offs for the World Championship 2011 was a disaster for Czech Republic, as they lost the first leg 26:42 and the second 26:33.

Rock-solid defence, good goalkeeping

However, Basny is confident his team has improved.

"We want to show how our team has developed in those three years since we lost against Montenegro.

"We have gained lot of experience and the improvement is significant. Now it is time to show it against the top European team."

His met in Most on Saturday, had his first training session and analysed the opponents.

Jan Basny can count on the whole squad with Iveta Luzumova (Thüringer HC ) and Martina Crhova (Kristianstad) arriving on Monday.

With overall five days of preparation before the match on Wednesday, there are  some details that Basny wants to work on.

"We have analysed our opponent's games from recent times, they are a perfect side, very organised, with great individuals.

"First of all we need to concentrate on improving our defence, which was the key to our success in the past, but which did not work in December at the World Championship in Serbia.

"Rock-solid defence supported by good goalkeeping – that´s what we need to apply in our game.

"That‘s the way for us to compete with the best. We were on the right track, now it´s time to get back on it."

Either side can secure qualification with two wins, yet Basny would be happy with two points already.

"Two points from the home game would be wonderful. We are in advantage after our away win in Poland. We need to build on this win in our home match with Montenegro," he told ehf-euro.com.

Czech Republic squad:

Goalkeepers: Barbora Ranikova (Metz Handball), Lucie Satrapova (DHC Slavia Praha), Dominika Müllnerova (DHK Banik Most)

Line players: Petra Vitkova (DHK Baník Most), Dominika Selucka (DHC Slavia Praha),

Wingers: Romana Chrenkova (HK Veseli nad Moravou), Kristína Salcakova (DHK Zora Olomouc), Jana Knedlikova (DHC Slavia Praha), Michaela Hrbkova (DHC Sokol Poruba)

Back court players: Martina Crhova (Kristianstad), Lucie Severova (DHK Zora Olomouc), Hana Kutlvasrova (DHC Slavia Praha), Helena Sterbova (Toulon St Cyr VAR HB), Hana Martinkova (DHK Banik Most), Iveta Luzumova (Thüringer HC), Katerina Keclikovs (DHC Slavia Praha), Petra Ruckova (DHK Banik Most), Tereza Kubackova (DHK Zora Olomouc)


TEXT: Tomas Cuncik / ts
 
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