Danish team beat Płock in the crucial duel for the first position and make it to the knock-out stage
Holstebro last quarter-finalist
All six quarter-finalists of the Men’s EHF Cup are confirmed: As last team Danish side Team Tvis Holstebro clinched their berth for the knock-out stage by winning the highly dramatic duel against Orlen Wisla Płock 27:26 on Sunday. Thanks to this victory Holstebro are number one in Group C, one point ahead of Slovenia´s Branik Maribor, which have also qualified for the quarter-finals. Płock are out, as well as Naturhouse La Rioja, the worst second ranked team.
After Saturday’s results, host Nantes had qualified directly for the EHF Cup Finals, so only three quarter-finals will be played with the four group winners and the two best second ranked teams, which are Maribor and Danish outfit KIF Kolding.
The draw will take place in Tuesday, 26 March at 11:45 hrs local time in Vienna and will be streamed live on www.ehfTV.com. Additional participants are the group winners Frisch Auf Göppingen, Rhein Neckar Löwen and SC Magdeburg (all Germany).
Team Tvis Holstebro (DEN) vs. Orlen Wisla Płock (POL) 27:26 (12:13)
Søren Hansen secured the victory and the qualification for the quarter-finals for Team Tvis Holstebro after a thrilling game, open until the dying seconds by scoring the 27:25 15 seconds before the final whistle.
The “do or die” encounter was on eye level for 60 minutes. Both teams needed to win to proceed, as a draw would have meant the elimination of both and the progress of Rioja.
Płock did not manage to take the lead in the second half after Tvis intermediately had been away by four goals (11:7) before the break.
Mostly Holstebro were away by one goal or the result was levelled in the second half, despite the hosts failed twice by penalty shots in the middle of the second half.
Thanks to three straight goals while being in a double man advantage, Tvis extended the gap to 23:20 and four minutes before the end to 26:23, but the Polish team always caught up. 27 seconds before the end, when the score was 26:25, Holstebro coach Klavs Bruun Jorgensen took his final time-out, and his players understood the tactics against the opponent who had switched to man-to-man defence. So Danish born coach Lars Walther and former Holstebro player Petar Nenadić are out with the team from Płock, as two Danish teams are among those six struggling for the three spots for the EHF Cup Finals in Nantes on 18/19 May.
And Team Tvis are the only club to have still two teams in the EHF Cup, as their women’s team have made it to the semi-finals.
Stiinta Municipal Dedeman Bacau (ROU) vs. SC Magdeburg (GER) 29:30 (20:16)
Magdeburg became the only unbeaten team of the group phase as their only point loss was a home draw against Nantes. Bacau was on the right track at the half-time leading by four goals, but the German team turned the tables after the break led by Matthias Musche with seven goals. Ionut Ramba was the best goal scorer of Bacau with eight goals.
TEXT: Björn Pazen / br
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