Savehof qualify, Aalborg failArticle
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Danish and Ukranian champions fight for the CL spot, but Swedish Savehof make it to Group B at the end.

Savehof qualify, Aalborg fail

In contrast to the past three years, Denmark will only have two teams in the group stage of the Women’s Champions League this season. Aalborg DH, did not manage to pass the test in their qualification group this weekend.

ADH, who generally attract around 4,500 spectators for the home matches in Denmark’s third largest city, did not repeat the performance of the last years. The team reached semi-final in 2005/06 and the quarterfinals last season.

Aalborg, had a troublesome start in the domestic season and they had difficulties in the Qualification Tournament 2 in Greece as well.

Everything started according to plans. The Danes defeated the hosts, AC Ormi-Louz Patras by 35-25. In the second match, against Swedish champions IK Sävehof, things got out of hand for Aalborg. At the end the Swedes managed to win no 32-26 after a ten-goal lead at a certain points in the second half. This was the first win for a Swedish league team against a Danish opponent from the Danish league for many years.

Improvement not enough

This meant that Aalborg would need a win of at least 10 goals against the most feared opponents, the Ukrainian HC “Motor” Zaporozhye. The Danes even lost their experienced playmaker, Rikke Nielsen, with a finger injury she picked up at the Sävehof match.

Nevertheless, the Danes able to meet the challenge, making their best performance in the qualification group. At some point they seemed to be able to make it: they were leading by six goals at 13-7 shortly before the end of the first half.

During the second half, however, Zaporozhye, who needed at least a draw in order to qualify for the group stage, slowly managed to reduce the distance even to one goal, which was the final result as Aalborg won 23-22. This result was not useful for either Aalborg or Zaporozhye, but was celebrated aloud by the Sävehof players in the hall.

The Swedes are preparing for the group stage of the Champions League, while both Aalborg and Zaporozhye will have to be satisfied with the EHF Cup.

Only two teams will represent Denmark in the Women’s CL, Slagelse DT and Viborg HK.

Savehof qualify for the CL

TEXT: Peter Bruun