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11.09.2015, 11:10
Four hopeful teams meet in Drammen
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PREVIEW: Glassverket IF host Qualification Group 1 for the Women’s EHF Champions League
 

Four hopeful teams meet in Drammen

One of the two remaining tickets for the Women’s EHF Champions League 2015/16 will be handed out in Drammenshallen in Norway on 13 September.

The Champions League winners from 2013 and 2014, Györi Audi ETO KC are seen by most people as the clear favourites, but hosts Glassverket do at least have the home advantage.

The winner of the group in Drammen will join Group C of the Group Phase, where HC Vardar, FC Midtjylland and Hypo Niederösterreich will be awaiting them.

GROUP 1

Györi Audi ETO KC (HUN) vs WHC Radnicki Kragujevac (SRB)

Saturday 12. September 16:30 local time

Having to go through the qualification tournament in order to reach the Champions League Group Phase will be a new experience for Györ who won the tournament in 2013 and again in 2014.

However, losing the Hungarian championship to their rivals FTC has put Györ in that situation.

At least three players in the Györ team are likely to feel at home - the three Norwegian internationals in the Hungarian roster – line player Heidi Loke, right back Linn Jorum Sulland and goalkeeper Kari Aalvik Grimsbo.

For Györ’s opponents from Kragujevac, playing in the Champions League qualifiers is no new experience. The Serbian club was in the same situation last year, without making it to the Group Phase.

There is no doubt, that again this year, the Kragujevac team, which consist entirely of Serbian players, except for Bosnian centre back Dejana Kulic will have their hands full against the ambitious Györ team under head coach Ambros Martin.

Still, the Györ coach is cautious: “The coming weekend will be our FINAL4! We are going to play two important matches in two days, and those matches will determine our season. Therefore we will have to be on form,” says Ambros Martin who regrets the absence of injured Gabriella Toth, but who seeks comfort in the return of Anita Görbicz from maternity leave.

Glassverket (NOR) vs SERCODAK Dalfsen (NED)
Saturday 12. September 19:00 local time

While this match will be Glassverket’s first European game ever, Dalfsen are well used to European handball, and with the Champions League qualifiers in particular.

This is the Dutch champions third attempt at trying to reach the promised land of the Group Phase, but so far without success.

If you ask their coach Peter Portengen, the young Dutch team is not likely to make the cut this year either.

“We definitely lack the international experience, but of course we hope for a surprise,” says Portengen who appears pretty relaxed about his team’s position as underdogs.

“Even if we miss out on qualification, we will play in the (EHF) Cup Winners’ Cup - and for our young team this is the perfect way to gain experience and learn for the future,” he says.

Glassverket coach Kenneth Gabrielsen is confident ahead of the meeting with Dalfsen:

“We know Dalfsen very well, and I feel confident that we should be able to beat them and reach the final, where I expect Györ to be waiting for us,” Gabrielsen told ehfCL.com.

Loser match 1 vs loser match 2
Sunday 13. September 14:30 local time in Drammen

Winner match 1 vs winner match 2
Sunday 13. September 17:00 in Drammen

Catch all the action live on ehfTV and find out who will snatch that all-important ticket to Group C.

Glassverket Photo: Peter Tubaas


TEXT: Peter Bruun / bc
 
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