Danish ladies with mixed resultsArticle
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While Slagelse had no chance against Hypo, Viborg won a derby against the Russian champions.

Danish ladies with mixed results

The two Danish teams in the women’s Main Round took a different start this weekend. While Slagelse suffered a 10-goal defeat at home against Hypo Niederösterreich, Viborg started perfectly against Zevezda Zvenigorod – although the Danes had to work hard to overcome the Russian champions!

Hypo difficulties

Only the first 20 minutes were equalHypo Niederösterreich opened Group 2 of the Main Round with the seventh win out of seven matches in the current Champions League season as they won the away game against Slagelse by 31-21.

However, an injury handicapped Slagelse team caused the Austrian champions quite a lot of difficulties in the first 20 minutes of the match. A vivid Slagelse attack with players changing position almost all the time confused the Hypo defence and at the same time an open Slagelse defence caused even more trouble for head coach András Németh´s team.

In addition, Slagelse keeper Karina Friis, who replaced a sick Cecilie Leganger, performed well at the beginning making 9 saves within the first 20 minutes – including two 7-meter shots.

Slagelse – practically without backcourt players due to injuries – were two goals up from the start, and were even leading by three at 10-7 after 21 minutes.

Radical change

At this point, however, the Hypo players started to read the Slagelse game and they also found out how to shoot against Karina Friis. This meant that the visitors managed to changed an 11-10 Slagelse lead into a 15-11. After the break they soon increased the lead to 16-11 and 21-12. At this point the match was decided. Hypo managed to increase their lead to thirteen goals at 26-13 and 31-18 before the 911 spectators in Antvorskovhallen in Slagelse saw the home team score the last three goals of the match.

Disappointed Andersen

Friis did well in the goalIn spite of all odds against Slagelse with so many injuries, head coach Anja Andersen was still very disappointed by.

“We did very well in the first 25 minutes keeping our tactical plans. As we dropped this concept, however, Hypo managed to get a 15-11 lead at half time. After this, the second half was just a long struggle for us to get as decent result, but we did not even succeed in that,” the Slagelse coach said after the match.

“However, I was a bit shocked that such a handicapped team as ours could put such a strong team as Hypo Niederösterreich under so much pressure – as long as we kept our tactics,” Anja Andersen added.

Tímea Tóth was Hypo Niederösterreich´s top scorer with 7 goals, while Marianne Bonde and Christina Krogshede scored 5 for Slagelse.

Viborg win despite disastrous start

The other first round match in Group 2 was a real drama with Viborg HK defeating Zvezda Zvenigorod 31-29. The endgame was extremely close and the Danes could only win in the last couple of minutes.

At the beginning of the match nothing indicated a Danish win, however. The Russian champions shocked their opponents with an unusually high pace and many counter attacks after quick throw-offs.

The Viborg fans were relieved after a long battleAt the same time, Viborg could not play their usual attacking play and the visitors took a 5-0 lead. Viborg coach, Tomas Ryde, called a team time-out at 0-4 after 4 minutes and 24 seconds! After 5 minutes and 25 seconds Rikke Skov scored the first goal of the hosts.

Zvezda got ahead 6-1 and 7-2 also, before Viborg had finally got their game adjusted to the Russian way of playing. Via 6-9 and 9-10, the home team managed to equalise at 11-11 after 25 minutes and 25 seconds, and with two minutes and 23 seconds left Viborg got their first lead in the match – 14-13, which was also the half time result.

Nail-biting second half

Viborg started the second half by increasing their lead to 15-13, but anyone among the 1490 spectators, who might have though that the Danes had things under control now, was soon proved wrong. A nail-biting second half started and the lead was changing all the time. The difference was never more than two goals.

At the end, however, Viborg seemed to have the better nerves and maybe also a bit more experience with this kind of matches. After 29-27 and 30-28, the narrow win was landed.

“We got an extremely slow start, not least due to the fact that Zvezda surprised us with their fast-breaks. In addition, our players seemed to be surprised that the Russians were so big – though this should not come as a surprise,” Viborg coach Tomas Ryde told Eurohandball.com after the match.

“It is still too early to say how this group may turn finish, but things would have looked worse by not winning this one,” Ryde added.

Bojana Popovic was top scorer of Viborg with 7 goals, while Anne Kareeva scored 6 on the other side.

TEXT: Peter Bruun