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23.07.2018, 08:22
France squeeze through, Scandinavian sadness
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DAY 3 REVIEW: The third and final matchday of the Men’s 20 EHF EURO Preliminary Round in Slovenia saw confirmation of which teams will go through to the main round and which go into the intermediate round.
 

France squeeze through, Scandinavian sadness

The third and final matchday of the Men’s 20 EHF EURO Preliminary Round in Slovenia saw confirmation of which teams will go through to the main round and which go into the intermediate round.

Slovenia, Germany, Iceland and Serbia (Group M1) and Spain, Portugal, France and Croatia (Group M2) will now play in the main round, while Sweden, Israel, Norway, Romania, Poland, Denmark, Hungary and Russia play for 9-16 places in the intermediate round onwards.

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

Group A
The 25:25 draw between Germany and Iceland saw the two sides take the two places on offer for the main round, with the Germans winning the group (four points), from Iceland in second (3).  Goalkeeper Janis Boieck put in a best player performance for the Germans, who had led 16:12, but the Iceland comeback not only meant their qualification through, but an exit for medal contention for the Swedes, who knew, going into their Romania match that whatever happened they could not surpass the Icelandic side, thanks to their head-to-head record.

Sweden did win though, against Romania 40:31, but the damage had already been done in the previous game.

Group B
Hosts Slovenia looked strong in their 27:23 win against the previously unbeaten Serbians as Grega Ocvirk was impressive again, scoring 12 times. With the group qualification already decided, both Israel and Norway knew they were heading to the intermediate round, but Israel ensured they did not finish bottom of the group, winning 30:25 as Ofir Cohen scored nine for them in a best player of the match performance.

Group C
Like group B, group C qualification spots were already clear before the final round of matches, but with their 36:31 win over Croatia, Spain ensured top spot with three wins from three and six points. An eight-goal half-time lead saw them breeze to victory, although Gonzalo Arce Perez picked up a direct red card in just the ninth minute.

Poland beat Russia to confirm their third place and it was clear early on as they led by 10 at the break (19:9) to eventually win 36:28.

Group D
It was two identical results for both France and Portugal as their 31:30 wins over Denmark and Hungary saw them both through to the main round.

The France vs Denmark match was a winner-takes-all game and the pressure was on both teams to seal their main round spot, however the French took the early initiative to lead by two at the break 16:14 as Kyllian Villeminot and Elohim Prandi saw their France side through with seven goals apiece.

Portugal were already confirmed as group winners and took some time to get going against bottom team Hungary, finding themselves one behind at the break (13:12), but led by tournament top-scorer, Diogo Silva with seven goals, they turned it around to win by one.

Silva is tied as tournament top-scorer with his 28 goals matched by Slovenia’s Grega Ocvirk.

Path to the Men’s 21 World Championship 2019 explained

With the main round and the intermediate round commencing, the battle for the European spots at the Men’s 21 World Championship 2019 in Spain has also begun.

Besides Spain as organiser of the Men’s 21 World Championship, ten more teams from the Men’s 20 EHF EURO 2018 in Slovenia will directly qualify for the 24-nation event. This means that all teams who have reached the main round (Germany, Slovenia, Iceland, Serbia, Spain, Portugal, Croatia and France) are already qualified.

Additionally, the teams ranked 9 to 11 will also qualify directly, granting additional importance to the cross and placement matches which will be played on 27 and 28 July.

RESULTS – DAY THREE
Saturday 22 July

Group A
Germany vs Iceland 25:25 (16:12)
Sweden vs Romania 40:31 (17:16)

Group B
Norway vs Israel 25:30 (10:15)
Slovenia vs Serbia 27:23 (14:13)

Group C
Croatia vs Spain 31:36 (12:20)
Russia vs Poland 28:36 (9:19)

Group D
France vs Denmark 31:30 (16:14)
Portugal vs Hungary 31:30 (12:13)

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
 
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