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20.05.2015, 16:52
"Detono is not a team, it is the team"
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FEATURE: Detono Zagreb are the most successful team competing at the ebt Finals this weekend

»Beach Handball Channel »2015 Men's News
»
 

"Detono is not a team, it is the team"

Led by Croatian national team players, reigning European champions and world champion runners-up, Detono Zagreb are seven-time national champions and five-time ebt champions.

The team from the Croatian capital has the best record of any team competing in the European Beach Handball Tour Finals this weekend, and is eager to continue their run when they hit the sand in Budaörs, Hungary from 22 to 24 May.

Injury blows and new faces

Detono rarely change their squad but were forced to do so ahead of the tournament due to the injury of Mladen Paradzik.

Paradzik, one of the side’s key players, has undergone shoulder surgery and is doubtful as to whether he will be able to play beach handball at the top level anymore.

"Despite that, expectations are high. We want to win again, but it will be very tough. All teams try desperately to win against the reigning champions.

"We know our strengths. These guys have played together for a long time. Detono is not a team, it is the team!" said coach Igor Pozeg.

Handball veteran and former Croatian national team player Igor Copot, who played for Detono at previous ebt tournaments, will step into Paradzik’s spot.

Coach Pozeg praises Copot’s attitude and knows he will be a valuable asset to the team:

"I remember when Igor was hit in a muscle in the semi-finals of the tournament in Greece and was extremely worried whether he could play finals. He is the man who will give everything to help his team win the tournament."

The same attitude is expected from two new faces: Croatian junior national team players Lucian Bura (right wing) and Klaudio Hranjec (line player).

Detono’s key players are expected to be goalkeeper Igor Totic, who was selected for the all-star team at the Beach Handball World Championship 2014 in Brazil, as well as the dynamic Matej Sosic and Marko Hranilovic.

Hranilovic will be very busy in Budaörs as he is also Detono's physio.

Fierce rivals

The reigning champions have been drawn in Group A together with Club Balonmano Playa Algeciras (Spain), OS Gordos / Aposta Ganha (Portugal), Paksoft Camelot (Netherlands) and hosts Budaörs Beach Stars.

According to Pozeg, the Hungarian team is one to keep an eye on:

"Budaörs broke our four-year winning streak in the group phase of the ebt two years ago. In the other group Ekaterinodar led by Russian national team players will probably be our fierce rival, though nobody should underestimate Dinamit and Plock."

The two first teams from Group A and B qualify for the semi-finals, which will be played on Sunday, 24 May. All matches from the main court on Friday, Saturday and Sunday will be streamed live.


TEXT: Tomislav Lauric / cg / ts
 
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