NEWS REPORT: 17 pairings of the first qualification round and 20 pairings of the second round have been determined
Draw of the Men’s EHF Cup
The draw of the Men's EHF Cup first two playing rounds took place at the EHF Office in Vienna on Tuesday. Leopold Kalin, the Chairman of the EHF Competitions Commission together with Markus Glaser, Senior Manager of the EHF Competitions carried out the draw.
The matches will be played with the home and away system.
The first qualification round for the Men's EHF Cup will throw off on 6 September with 34 teams competing including three participants of the last season’s group phase. Swedish side IFK Kristianstad will play against the 2012 Challenge Cup winners AC Diomidis Argos from Greece, while Slovakia’s Sporta Hlohovec will take on Turkey's Bursa Nilüfer BK and HC Zomimak-M from FYR Macedonia will meet Gornik Zabrze from Poland.
In the round 2 Ademar Leon from Spain, two-time holders of the Cup Winners’ Cup, will lock horns with the winner of the round 1 match between the Swiss team BSV Bern Muri and HC Gomel from Belarus, while HBC Nantes from France, hosts of the first EHF Cup Finals tournament in 2013, and will encounter the winner of the Croatian derby between RK Dubrava and GRK Varazdin.
"To be honest, I don't know any of the two Croatian teams we might play against. I think I'll ring Stefan Vujin (Croatian player who played in Nantes until a month ago). Jokes aside, the unknown part of this draw will have to be taken very seriously. We don't want to stop at the first round, obviously," Rock Feliho from Nantes commented the draw.
Everything will be done by the staff, so we have as much information as possible when October comes. We can't afford to let any detail unwatched, especially since the return game is in Croatia," he added.
A big European premiere awaits both MT Melsungen and Fenix Toulouse in the second round as the German club will meet the French opponents.
"It sure isn't the easiest first confrontation in the history of the club! It will be a proper test right from the off, on the court side of the things because Melsungen is a very strong team, but also mentally. We will face a huge journey, a different arena, the German fans. The ones who have lived these things already, and I'm one of them, will have to bring something extra. It's still a little comforting that the return game will be played in Toulouse. We'll do our best so our European adventure isn't just a one-off. No matter how things go, it will be a great experience for our young squad," the French international goalkeeper Cyril Dumoulin from Toulouse said.
Another German side Füchse Berlin, hosts of the EHF Cup Finals 2014, will enter the competition in the third qualification round together with Bundesliga rivals HSV Hamburg, winners of the VELUX EHF Champions League in 2013, two Spanish teams BM Huesca and Fraikin BM Granollers, Russia St. Petersburg HC and Slovenia's Gorenje Velenje.
Pick Szeged, the 2014 EHF Cup winners from Hungary, play in the VELUX EHF Champions League this season.
QubiQ Achilles Bocholt (BEL) vs RK Zeleznicar 1949 Nis (SRB)
Eskilstuna Guif (SWE) vs SonderjyskE Herrehandbold A/S (DEN)
TEXT: EHF / br
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