Doborac: Dinamo is a big club with excellent peopleArticle
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INTERVIEW: Performances of the experienced Bosnian in firsdt three rounds have contributed to a very good start of the Belarusian qualifiers. In the exclusive interview with Doborac reveals his feelings about his time in Minsk.

»EHF CL Channel »2013-14 Men's News

Doborac: Dinamo is a big club with excellent people

Surprisingly, after three matches in the VELUX Champions League, Dinamo Minsk occupy the second place in the Group C. The Belarusian champion lost to PSG Handball in the opening game in France, but went on to clinch two home victories against Vardar Skopje and Wacker Thun.

The best scorer of the qualifiers at the moment is Damir Doborac, the 33-year-old Bosnian who has produced 17 goals in the three games. He is one of numerous new players signed by the Minsk side in summer. Having played in Bosnia, Slovenia, Germany and Italy during his long career, Damir has enough experience and skills to help Dinamo. spoke to Damir Doborac about his Belarusian challenge. How important is it for you to be the team’s top scorer?

Damir Doborac: I did not even know about it! You are the first to tell me that. For me, these individual statistics are not important at all. There are things that matter much more. The main thing is that everyone in our team should be healthy and fit. And I hope that we will keep getting good results.

I am not an egoist. First and foremost, I think about the team interests. In my previous clubs, I have also been the best scorer a couple of times. But it is not so important who exactly scores. This is just one side of handball. Anyway, it seems that your adaptation at Dinamo went quite smoothly. What helped you to adjust? Probably the fact that there are many players from the Balkans in the team, and the coach Boris Denic is Slovenian?

Damir Doborac: It is one of the factors. But definitely not the only one. In fact, there are good players of many nationalities at Dinamo, including Belarusians, Russians, Ukrainians... And I try to work hard at the trainings, give my best. Good preparation helps me to perform well at the matches. You have played in the VELUX Champions League before, have you not?

Damir Doborac: Yes, for Cimos Koper and Bosna Sarajevo. Of course, this is a special tournament. Everyone wants to take part in it. And I am happy to play once more in this competition, this time for Dinamo Minsk Your team has four points after three games. Are you delighted with this result?

Damir Doborac: Surely I am! Hopefully we will keep going like this. However, it is hard to say if we already belong to the group favorites or not. We have played only three games, and two of them took place in Minsk. Our group is very tough, but we want to qualify for the next round. This is our objective, and if we reach it, then we will see. On Sunday, Dinamo will play in Skopje against Metalurg. Probably the team are eager to take revenge for the last season, when the Belarusian champions lost to the Macedonian team in the Last 16?

Damir Doborac: I did not play for Dinamo last year. And I think that the previous games do not really matter now. It is already history. But, of course, I want to beat Metalurg. It will be hard though, as the Macedonians are a strong side. How did you actually move to Dinamo Minsk?

Damir Doborac: Last season, I played in Bosnia for Gradacac, the club from my home town. But I wanted to try my luck abroad once again, so I was waiting for good offers. When I got one from Minsk, I did not hesitate at all and signed a contract immediately. For me, Dinamo is a big club with excellent people. I am very happy to have come here. You spent many years playing in Slovenia. Did you get acquainted with Boris Denic there?

Damir Doborac: Right. He has never been my coach at Cimos Koper, but we met there anyway. By the way, in Slovenia I also got to know some of my current teammates at Dinamo. With Dean Bombac, we even played together at Cimos for a few years. David Miklavcic and Uros Bundalo were our opponents... And coming back to Denic: he is a great person and a true handball expert. Handball is his life. At Dinamo, you occupy a left back position. But in the past, you played mostly in the middle back...

Damir Doborac: Indeed, I am more used to performing a playmaker’s role. But the left back is also a familiar position for me. Sometimes I occupied it in my ex-teams, so I had some experience. And in Minsk, the coach wanted me to play as a left back, too. So I just do my best to help the team. At this position, you compete with the Spaniard Mikel Aguirrezabalaga who moved to Minsk from Barcelona. And so far, you get more playing time and score more goals than he does...

Damir Doborac: Unfortunately Mikel had some problems with his health: first with his hand, then with the knee. But now he is gradually getting back in a good shape. Aguirrezabalaga is a great guy, so I want both of us to play! As I said before, I am not an egoist...

Further information

Follow the match Metalurg vs Dinamo Minsk live on ehfTV on Sunday, 18:00 hrs. local time

TEXT: Sergey Nikolaev / br