Women's summary: Main RoundArticle
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Group B is open in the Women's CL. Read what's happened over the weekend.

Women's summary: Main Round

Hypo Niederösterreich qualified for the semi-finals and Viborg are only a step behind in Group A. Both favourites won their away matches over the weekend. The situation in Group B is pretty tense now as Valcea lost in Ljubljana and Buducnost reached a draw in the second game against Győr. All four teams still can qualify for the semifinals.

Group A

Ikast Brande – Hypo Niederösterreich 23:33 (11:19)

Hypo Niederösterreich are the first team to qualify for the semi-finals. By winning very clearly in Ikast, the Austrians remain spotless and lead the table with the maximum number of points, eight.

The finalist of last season didn’t have problems in Ikast. After 30 minutes the match was decided and Hypo extended their lead to 10 goals after the break. Ikast remain without a point in the main round.

The Best scorers of Hypo were Tóth with six and Acimovic and Nascimento with five goals each. Goalkeeper Sabine Englert showed spectacular saves against her future club. Gro Hammerseng scored six times for the Danes.

Podravka Vegeta – Viborg HK 26:31 (10:17)

Viborg have paved the way to the semi-finals with a highly important victory in Croatia. Even if the Danes lose their last two matches and Podravka win both, the Croats would have to beat Viborg in Denmark by more than five goals. And it sounds like a hard job.

Without the injured top star, Bojana Popovic, Viborg needed long time to claim victory. The match was decided in the very last minutes as VHK scored five consecutive goals – from 26:26 to the final score of 31:26.

The match winner of the Danes was goalkeeper Katrine Lunde Haraldsen, who saved an incredible 67 % of all Podravka shots. After 9:9 Viborg went away to 17:10 at halftime and the seemed to be over.

However, Koprivnica fought hard to take their last chance for the semi-finals. In the 47th minute they equalised at 21:21 and afterwards the match was equal until 26:26.

“We played an outstanding first half with a sensational Katrine Lunde, but then we made too many mistakes after the break. We nearly lost our rhythm completely,” Viborg coach Jacob Vestergaard said. “We had a turbulent week after the injury of Bojana Popovic. So it was hard to concentrate on the match completely. But in the end the saves of Katrine brought back our self confidence.”

Group B

Krim Ljubljana – Oltchim Valcea 35:34 (17:15)

In Group B everything is possible again and all four team have the chance to reach the semi-finals now.

Group leader Oltchim Valcea lost in Ljubljana and has four points like Krim. At the same time, Győr didn’t take the chance as they couldn’t win in Podgorica. This draw opens the gate for both teams.

Andrea Lekic was the match winner of Krim at the end of a thrilling match against Valcea. Not only she scored nine goals all together, but she also converted the last chance and made it 35:34 in the very last minute of the match.

The game of the two top teams was totally equal, even if Krim had advantages in the first half. But Valcea kept their pace and stayed in the lead after the break.

Krim tried hard to get the two important points and they played more aggressively than the Romanians in the final stage of the match. Anyway, they were unable to stop Valcea’s top scorer Ardean (nine goals). After Lekic had scored the 35:34 (her ninth goal), Krim goalkeeper Stefanisin saved the last Valcea shot and kept her team in the race for the semi-finals.

Buducnost T-Mobile – Győr ETO 26:26 (9:14)

6,000 spectators in Podgorica saw a match that was imprinted by strong defending. Győr missed their chances to win as they were in lead all the time.

Buducnost fought hard until the very last second to secure a point that might be highly important in the race for the semi-finals.

Győr started highly motivated and were leading by seven goals in the mid first half. Buducnost came closer goal by goal after the break and just three minutes from the end, Podgorica – led by Radicevic (8 goals) and Bulatovic (5) – reduced the distance to two goals.

And then the Montenegrins took the great chance to equalise as they were in a 6 against 4 situation in the last two minutes.

The best scorers of Győr were Vérten and Tomori with seven goals each. Győr are leading the table with five points now, but the Hungarians have a bug advantage that they will play their last two main round matches at home.

Buducnost still have the chance to go on with three points at the moment– right behind Valcea and Krim.

TEXT: Björn Pazen