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21.07.2018, 10:56
Dreams realised, dreams broken, dreams still alive
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DAY 2 REVIEW: The second matchday of the Men’s 20 EHF EURO in Slovenia sees decisions made as hosts march through to main round and Portugal look dominant on Friday.
 

Dreams realised, dreams broken, dreams still alive

The second matchday of the Men’s 20 EHF EURO in Slovenia sees decisions made as hosts march through to main round.

The full playing schedule can be found HERE, and all games are free and live on ehfTV.com.

Group A
This group should be called the ‘Group of Life’ with all four teams having a chance of qualifying for the main round going into the final day of preliminary round matches, following the results on the second matchday yesterday.

Germany remained unbeaten after their opening day draw against Sweden, beating Romania 30:25 as player of the match Lukas Stutzke scored nine times from his left back position while Iceland, who could only score just six goals in the first half against Romania in their first match, scored 19 times against the Swedes in the first period to set them up for a 35:33 (19:12) win as their opponents fell short of the goal chase thanks to a best player of the match showing from Iceland goalkeeper Andri Scheving.

Eight goals from Haukar’s left wing Orri Throkelsson also helped, although centre back Svein Sveinsson was shown a red card for three two-minute suspensions after just 25 minutes.

All of this means that all four teams have everything to play for in their third matchday tomorrow after the rest day today.

Group B
Hosts Slovenia, alongside Serbia, confirmed their qualification through to the main round with wins over Norway and Israel respectively, sending their opponents into the intermediate round. All that remains to be decided now are who finishes top and who finishes bottom, with Slovenia and Serbia playing off for the number one position tomorrow.

In their 30:27 win against Norway, Serbia saw Nikola Ivanovic receive a direct red card in the last minute but by then RK Metaloplastika’s left back Djordje Pisaric had earned himself the best player of the match award as he scored eight times in total for Zoran Tijanic’s side. Nine goals were not enough for Sindre Heldal and his Norwegian team who will be looking to get off the mark tomorrow against Israel.

The Israelis however, made the hosts sweat in front of their home crowd as Slovenia eventually ran out 28:24 (15:13) winners, but they had to work for it. Adir Cohen’s eight goals and his best player of the match award showed how difficult the game was for the home nation as the Hapoel Ashdod left back picked key moments to score for Israel, but Grega Ocvirk again showed his importance to Slovenia, scoring a game-changing 11 goals to pave the way into the main round.

Group C
Just like group B, group C is now settled with Croatia and Spain both through to the main round at the expense of Poland and Russia.

In the first match, RK Izvidac CO left back Josip Sarac scored 10 goals for Croatia, who had 11 different scorers in total, highlighting their attacking flair as Poland were behind at the break by three (17:14) before letting the Croatians move further ahead to win by eight (35:27).

Despite being behind by just two goals at the break (11:9), Russia failed in their comeback in the second half against Spain to also lose by eight (28:20) as the Spanish confirmed their place in the next round to send Russia out of contention. Pol Valera Rovira scored five times for Spain, while Andrei Beliaev grabbed seven for the Russians.

Group D
Portugal confirmed their place in the main round thanks to a 31:29 win over Denmark as Diogo Silva took his tally to 21 goals in two games – nine in this one – to lead the Men’s 20 EHF EURO top-scorers list. The result means that Denmark and France will battle it out in their winner-takes-all match tomorrow for the final qualification spot tomorrow as even with a Portugal loss and Hungarian win, the head-to-head records mean that the opposite fates of Portugal and Hungary are already known.

France easily beat Hungary 34:23 (17:10) as Kyllian Villeminot started to warm up nicely with six goals and, along with the rest of his teammates, will be hoping to be red hot come the Danish clash tomorrow.

RESULTS – DAY TWO

Group A
Romania vs Germany 25:30 (15:17)
Sweden vs Iceland 33:35 (12:19)

Group B
Norway vs Serbia 27:30 (12:18)
Israel vs Slovenia 24:28 (13:15)

Group C
Poland vs Croatia 27:35 (14:17)
Russia vs Spain 20:28 (9:11)

Group D
Hungary vs France 23:34 (10:17)
Portugal vs Denmark 31:29 (14:11)

Photos: Slavko Kolar/Jurij Kodrun

The full playing schedule can be found HERE, and all games are free and live on ehfTV.com.


TEXT: EHF/amc
 
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