The Serbian THW Kiel shooter returns home for a duel with Partizan Belgrade.
Ilic back in Serbia
Since 2009, the two-metres tall Momir Ilic is shooting for THW Kiel. After the first of two duels against Partizan Belgrade, the Serbian player talks about duels with clubs from his home country and the upcoming EHF EURO 2012 in Serbia.
ehfCL.com: THW Kiel won their first match against Partizan Belgrade with 36:28. What happened in first half when it didn’t look very well?
Momir Ilic: It did not seem fine but Partizan also played very well. They had a quick game-play and a strong goalkeeper. In second half we managed to show our qualities and with our experience to take back control and to win the match.
ehfCL.com: Was it something special for you to play against the champions of your home country?
Momir Ilic: Frankly, not really. Despite meeting country fellows, I entered the court dispassionately and professionally. The most important things for me are two victories for THW Kiel.
ehfCL.com: On Wednesday you will have the re-match against Partizan in Belgrade. Does the outlook of a trip to your native country produce anticipation?
Momir Ilic: Yes, it does. Any professional athlete who plays abroad is pleased when he can play a match in his home country. Unfortunately I will not have enough time for a trip to my hometown Arandelovac, a small town 80 km south of Belgrade. So instead my family will come to Belgrade to watch the game live. I am looking forward to seeing many known faces.
ehfCL.com: In January Serbia will be in the focus of the handball world as they host the Men’s EHF EURO 2012. What was your impression of the venues Belgrade, Nis and Vrsac in early November?
Momir Ilic: I saw the venues at a four-nation tournament against the Czech Republic, Croatia and Hungary. Some things went all right for our team, but we also saw where we could improve. I think we will have chances against all teams – perhaps with the exception of France and Croatia.
The European Championship is a great opportunity for handball in Serbia. The fans have high expectations; some venues are already sold out. We have to learn to work under that kind of pressure.
ehfCL.com: In Germany it was often heard that you could transfer to Rhein-Neckar Löwen. What do you think about it?
Momir Ilic: This is no longer an issue. My contract with THW will run over one and half years and I am planning on fulfilling it until the end. About the time after the contract has run out I do not think now.
TEXT: Jan Kirschner
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