Zvezda running for the semi-finalsArticle
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Zvezda Zvenrigord are back in the race for the semi-finals in Group 2 after an easy 27-20 away victory over Slagelse DT.

Zvezda running for the semi-finals

Evgeni Trefilov’s girls did not even have give more than 60% to defeat the Danish champions. Slagelse were missing several key players once again.

Coach Trefilov can still guide his team to the semi-finalsSlagelse scored the first goal of the match, but after that Zvezda were dominant and the Russian champions went 6-3, 10-6 and 15-7 ahead before winning the first half by 16-9. All the time it was obvious that Slagelse’s attack – still almost without backcourt players – was not enough against a physically strong Russian defence.

This also made the job quite easy for Zvezda´s goalkeepers, Nigina Saidova and Tatiana Parfenova, who got a halftime each and saved 11 and 8 shots respectively.

Zvezda not focused

Zvezda continued to increase their lead from the start of the second half with ease and quite logically they got their first ten goal lead at 19-9 shortly after the break. From that point on, however, the visitors were obviously not focused with easy task at hands. Evgenji Trefilov sent the substitutes on court towards the end and the home team were allowed to crawl closer.

Slagelse got enthusiastic support from the 500 spectators who never really stopped to back the home team. With their help Slagelse managed to close the gap a bit to finally suffer their smallest defeat in the Main Round so far.

Andersen happy with the spirit

“For great parts of the match our defence was really great, while there is still room for improvement in attack,” Slagelse´s head coach Anja Andersen said after her team’s fourth consecutive CL defeat.

“However, I think my players fought brilliantly and I think the result was okay taking in consideration the number of players missing,” Anja Andersen added.

Russian international and world champion Jelena Polenova was the top scorer of the match with 7 goals, while Montenegrin international Maja Savic scored 6 for Slagelse.

Zvezda Zvenigorod have 4 points from 4 matches. They will play a key match at home against the other Danish team in the group, Viborg HK, next Sunday.

At the same time, the result meant that Slagelse lost their last tiny chance to defend the Champions League trophy they won last year for the third time in four years.

Anja Andersen’s team are still without a single point in the Main Round and can no longer reach the semi-finals.

TEXT: Peter Bruun