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09.06.2015, 09:52
Bosnia-Herzegovina to go all out against Belarus
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PREVIEW: Bosnia-Herzegovina play down the troubles in preparation for the 'chance of a lifetime' match against Belarus when they fight for their EHF EURO premiere
 

Bosnia-Herzegovina to go all out against Belarus

Bosnia-Herzegovina did not make their EHF EURO 2016 Qualification campaign any easier following a 19:15 loss against Lithuania at the beginning of May, but with Denmark already secured their EURO berth and Lithuania with only an outside chance of qualifying, the Bosnian dream of a first EHF EURO is still in their hands.

With three points and games against Belarus (11 June) and Denmark (14 June), ahead, the team coached by Dragan Markovic finds itself ranked second, equal by points with Belarus.  

Having the first of the two remaining matches at home in Zenica, Bosnia-Herzegovina are well within chance to put the EHF EURO 2016 berth beyond doubt, regardless of the result against Denmark - by taking two points against Belarus.

"We knew about the possibility to directly decide the qualification with Belarus at home, and were hoping that it would turn out that way, after we’ve succeeded to take one point in Minsk (25:25)," said Markovic.

Used to the problems

It is by now as close to a rule that every big match for Bosnia-Herzegovina is followed by an even greater uncertainty. Regardless of the fact that they are playing the match of the season on Thursday – the misfortunes kept mounting.

First came the news that the all-important Dusko Celica would have to miss the key match because of an injury. Lastly, the ill-fated Bosnian camp learned that playmaker Igor Karacic also sustained an injury, having only an outside chance of featuring on Thurday.

"By now I have developed some sort of resilience to these kinds of developments. The medical team will try to promptly recuperate Karacic, but we have already accepted that we’ll have to go on without him.

"The encouraging sign is that Tarabochia has been granted citizenship, and he will have the right to play for us – he could be one of the surprising factors to balance out the team. We are looking for whichever way to compensate for the absentees," said Markovic.

The dark horse

In is not unseen of Bosnia-Herzegovina to upset the odds-on favourites. They have done it before, securing the World Championship 2015 participation with an impressive performance against Iceland.

Relishing the role of the ‘dark horse’ in the EHF EURO 2016 Qualification, coach Markovic underlines the importance to secure a place at the final tournament.

"The EURO is our goal, but I am aware we are not there yet. We want to compete against the best teams, and this match is the chance of a lifetime for us to fight for an opportunity to play on the big stage.

"We know what kind of team we are facing, but we have the will to go for all or nothing, fight for every ball in front of our fans in Zenica, and see what happens."

Bosnia-Herzegovina squad for the EHF EURO Qualification matches against Belarus and Denmark:

Goalkeepers: Benjamin Buric (RK Gorenje), Mario Blazevic (CSM Bucuresti), Nebojša Grahovac (Chartres)

Wing players: Alen Ovcina (Al-Shamal SC), Mirko Mikic (Borac M:tel Banja Luka), Faruk Vrazalic (HBW Balingen-Weilstetten), Muhamed Zulfic (RK Bosna)

Back court players: Nikola Prce (KS Azoty-Pulawy), Dusko Celica (RK PPD Zagreb), Mirsad Terzic (MKB-MVM Veszprem), Marko Tarabochia (KS Azoty-Pulawy), Ivan Karacic (HC Meshkov Brest), Josip Peric (Qatar SC), Dejan Malinovic (US Creteil Hand), Marko Panic (Chambery Savoie) Kosta Savic (KS Azoty-Pulawy), Stefan Jankovic (Borac M:tel Banja Luka)

Line players: Vladimir Vranjes (MOL-Pick Szeged), Senjamin Buric (RK Gorenje)


TEXT: Nemanja Savic / ts
 
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