30 matches were played on the first day of the European Championships at Lloret 2015. And while one defending champion enjoyed a perfect start, the other one showed signs of weaknesses
Perfect first day for Croatia's men; Italy's women start strong
There was no shortage of action and thrill on the first day of the European Championships in Lloret de Mar. No less than 30 matches were played, providing all the teams with more than just one possibility to showcase their skills.
In the men's event defending champions Croatia once more proved a class of their own. They won their first match 2:0 againt Germany and then sent Sweden home with the same result.
However, they were not the only team to maintain a perfect record on this first day. Hosts Spain (vs Sweden and Poland) and Ukraine (vs Poland and Germany) also won both matches 2:0. In Group B this feat was achieved by Hungary, Russia and Serbia.
The preliminary round continues on Wednesday with another two matches for each men's team. After all group phase matches have been played on Wednesday, the four main round participants from each will eventually be known (all current men's standings).
While it was plain sailing for defending champions Croatia in the men's event, things were a bit different for their female counterpart, Hungary, in the women's championship.
Right in their first game they had to concede 1:2 defeat against Russia. However, the team pulled itself together and finished the tournament's first day with a 2:0 against Germany and a narrow 2:1 win against Poland.
Strongest team in this Group A are Italy who won all their three matches (2:0 against Poland; 2:0 against Serbia and 2:1 against Russia).
Their counterparts in Group B are Norway, the 2013 championships bronze medallists. They first beat hosts Spain 2:0 and then continued their campaign with 2:1 win against Netherlands and a 2:0 against Sweden.
Hot on their heels are Netherlands, Ukraine and Spain, who have all played three times and won two matches each (all current women's standings).
Similar to the men's event, the women's competition will continue on Tuesday with the first matches throwing off at 10:00 CET.
The live stream for all main court matches can be watched at http://lloretbeachhandball.com/live-tv/
Photos: Filip Viranowski / http://www.24rakomet.mk
TEXT: EHF / ts
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