Thriller leaves Brest and Zagreb waiting for first win
What a thriller in Belarus: Meshkov Brest and HC PPD Zagreb fought for every centimetre on court but ended up sharing the points in the EHF Champions League on Wednesday: 30:30.
The result left both teams waiting for their first win in group A this season.
- while Zagreb are on two points now, Brest took their first one in their seventh game
- the draw meant that Zagreb have not won any of their last 23 CL matches since March 2020; Brest have not won their last nine matches
- Meshkov were not ahead in the first half and levelled the score five times
- Zagreb were clearly stronger in terms of goalkeeping, as Matej Mandic saved 13 shots, three more than Brest’s duo Viachaslau Saldatsenka and Ilya Usik
- after the break, Meshkov turned a 20:17 deficit into their first lead (23:22) in an eight-minute period where Zagreb missed too many chances
- from the 23:23, either Zagreb were one goal ahead or the score was level
- Stanislav Kasparek (six goals for Brest) and Ivan Cupic (seven for Zagreb) were the best scorers
Many chances for the winning goal… but all missed
When Viachaslau Shumak scored the 30:30 with 80 seconds left to play, hardly anyone expected that this was going to be the final result. With 50 seconds to go, Zagreb coach Ivica Obrvan took his last timeout, but Luka Lovre Klarica failed to score against Viachaslau Saldatsenka. Brest coach Dani Gordo also used his green card, 14 seconds before the final buzzer, but Matej Mandic saved the shot of Andrei Yurinok, while time was too short for Davor Cavar to score the winner on the other side of the court.
We could lose, we could win, at the end we have got a draw. I think that both goalkeepers were the most important players tonight. I am proud of my guys and the atmosphere that was created by our fans at the arena, they helped us a lot.