15 goals from Hagman as Holstebro move close to triumph
Team Tvis Holstebro took a huge step towards their second triumph in the Women’s EHF Cup in three years, as they defeated Rostov-Don by 33:20 in front of 1389 spectators in the Graakjaer Arena of Holstebro.
After a fairly even first half, the Danish steamrolled their opponents in the last 30 minutes and are now favourites to win the tournament.
Women’s EHF Cup final, Leg 1
Team Tvis Holstebro (DEN) vs Rostov-Don (RUS) 33:20 (12:12)
15 goals from right back Nathalie Hagman helped Team Tvis Holstebro brand themselves as the big favourites ahead of the final tie against the Russian champions from Rostov-Don.
Apart from the 23-year-old Swedish international, goalkeeper Silje Solberg also contributed a lot to the big Danish win.
With a saving percentage above 50, the 24-year-old Norwegian international carved the way for many of the counter attacks – one of the keys to this massive win.
Many people expected this match to be a chess game on a handball court between the two Danish coaches, Niels Agesen by Holstebro and Jan Leslie by Rostov-Don.
From the start of the match, however, Agesen seemed to checkmate his fellow Dane, as the home team were leading 11:7 after 19 minutes.
Holstebro did not manage to maintain the pace, though, and the visitors managed to catch up to the four-goal deficit by half-time.
In the second half, the hosts put their foot on the gas and powered home goal after goal.
The pace increased and the strong performance from Solberg in goal made counter attack after counter attack roll towards the Russian goal.
At the final buzzer, the score-board showed a 13-goal difference, which obviously gives Holstebro a huge chance of winning the EHF Cup for the second time within three years.
“I am very impressed by the girls – on how disciplined they played. I am really surprised that we could pull off a performance like this. Before the match, I would have been happy to lead by five goals lead heading to Russia, so 13 is simply fantastic,” Team Tvis Holstebro coach Niels Agesen said.
“We simply missed too many opportunities in the second half, and that enabled Tvis to run their counter attacks. We managed to stop them in the first half, when they were four goals up, but in the second half, we did not manage to keep up,” Rostov-Don coach Jan Leslie told eurohandball.com.
“Furthermore, it seemed as if we gave up, when we went seven goals down, and I did not manage change that during the time outs, Jan Leslie added.
TEXT: Peter Bruun / bc