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16.10.2016, 17:20
Powerful CSM kick off campaign with a win
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GROUP C REVIEW: Overcoming Rostov's will for revenge, title holders CSM Bucuresti start the Women's EHF Champions League season with an important win.
 

Powerful CSM kick off campaign with a win

Title holders CSM Bucuresti took advantage of Rostov's woes from the start and dictated the tempo. A flurry of saves from Paula Ungureanu decided the game (24:21), as CSM had answers for anything Rostov threw at them.

  • CSM led the game from start to finish and earned their third win in as many matches against Rostov

  • Goalkeeper Jelena Grubisic scored two goals for CSM after Rostov pulled off Katrine Lunde to be able to play with seven outfield players

  • Bella Gullden scored six goals from six shots, continuing her amazing form that earned her the MVP title last season

GROUP C:
CSM Bucuresti (ROU) vs Rostov-Don (RUS) 24:21 (12:10)

There is nothing sweeter than the taste of revenge against a team that, practically, ended your season with a pair of unexpected wins.

Rostov tried everything to revenge their elimination from the quarter-final phase against CSM last season, but ultimately failed. The Romanian powerhouse employed an impressive defence to win their first two points.

Big risk, zero reward

Without Line Jorgensen and Cristina Varzaru, who were both injured, CSM was looking vulnerable on the right wing. But the title holders picked themselves up and took serious advantage of Rostov's aggressive tactics.

As coach Jan Leslie pulled the goalkeeper during every attacking play, forcing 7-against-6 situations, goalkeeper Jelena Grubisic and wing Majda Mehmedovic managed to score from their own half to put CSM in front (5:3) after 11 minutes.

While Rostov continued to press with the aggresive 3-2-1 defence, CSM managed to contain the three-pronged attack of Ilina, Bobrovnikova and Barbosa, forcing precious turnovers that saw the Romanian side jump to an 11:8 lead after 25 minutes.

Ungureanu saves the day

A 12:10 lead at half-time, helped by three goals in an empty net scored by CSM, outlined how the second half unfolded. The title holders continued to push in attack and found themselves again with a three-goal difference (15:12) after 37 minutes.

Rostov mounted an early comeback to tie the game at 16 all, but Jakob Vestergaard changed goalkeepers in the 43rd minute and his decision brought the two points for CSM.

While the Romanian attack made mistake after mistake, it were Paula Ungureanu's amazing 1-against-1 saves against Managarova and Dembele which kept CSM afloat.

It was the end of Rostov's hopes as the Russian runners-up did not have the power and grit to mount another comeback. CSM wrapped up a 24:21 win in theit first game after winning their maiden title.

Post-match statements:

Jan Leslie, Rostov-Don coach: "We played so badly that I can barely believe it. And now we need to go home and analyse the game and see what we did wrong. I know we played against the Champions League winner but only two of our players performed well today, Barbosa and Lunde. We need to perform better so I hope this is the only off-day we have."

Alexandrina Barbosa, Rostov-Don left back: "We knew the first game would be difficult. We didn't have a good game but I think we had options to win. We think positively, we can play better at home than we did today."

Jakob Vestergaard, Bucuresti coach: "Both teams have a lot of new players and need to find their rhythm. We knew we needed a very good fighting spirit considering we also have a few injured players, Line Jorgensen and Cristina Varzaru. Our goalkeepers did great, they were a big part of our win today."

Jelena Grubisic, Bucuresti goalkeeper: "I think we played good, with ups and downs and mistakes, but the most important is the win."


TEXT: Adrian Costeiu / ew
 
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