Big names learn their last hurdles before Group PhaseArticle
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NEWS REPORT: Many interesting matches coming up as the draw has formed sixteen pairings of the EHF Cup Qualification Round 3 on Tuesday. Last season's runners-up HBC Nantes travel to Norway, former EHF Champions League winners Montpellier Agglomeration HB to Russia.
»2013-14 Men's News

Big names learn their last hurdles before Group Phase

A long November trip await former EHF Champions League winners Montpellier Agglomeration HB after the draw for the EHF Cup Qualification Round 3 was made at the EHF Office in Vienna on Tuesday.

In their first campaign in other European Cup than the continental top flight after 11 years the 2003 EHF Champions League trophy holders will face Russia's HC Kaustik Volgograd in the last knockout round before the Group Phase. In total, 32 teams vie for sixteen places in the group stage and several other big names of European handball learned their fate on Tuesday too.

Nordic mission for Nantes, Alpine derby for Chambery

The last season’s runners-up and 2013 EHF Cup Finals hosts HBC Nantes will meet with Norwegian champions Elverum HH, while the third French representative Chambery Savoie Handball will play the Alpine derby with Austrian champions Alpla HC Hard, what will be Chambery's first quest outside the VELUX EHF Champions League after five straight years.

The Balkan adventure is looming for all three Danish participants as Aarhus Haandbold will lock their horns with Macedonian HC Zomimak-M, 2002 and 2003 Challenge Cup winners Skjern Haandbold will clash with Serbian champions RK Vojvodina and Black Sea coast is a destination for Mors-Thy Handbold meeting Romanian champions HCM Constanta in their premiere European campaign.

First European match of Hannover 

Both German teams will face difficult challenges. 2012 VELUX EHF FINAL4 participants Füchse Berlin will test Belarus' HC Meshkov Brest in what will be a match between two of the bidders for the 2014 EHF Cup Finals, while the maiden European campaign of TSV Hannover Burgdorf will start in Switzerland against Kadetten Schaffhausen.

After reaching the Last 16 of the VELUX EHF Champions League last season, the 1999 Cup Winners’ Cup winners Reale Ademar Leon will try to make it to the top sixteen of the EHF Cup at the expense of Croatia's RK Nexe.

Another traditional EHF Champions League club Pick Szeged will set out for a Portuguese mission meeting SL Benfica, while perennial Slovakian champions Tatran Presov will face the quarter-finalists of the last season RK Maribor Branik.

The first leg matches of the Qualification Round 3 are scheduled for 23/24 November 2013, the second leg will follow one week later. The Group Phase will start on 8/9 February 2014, followed by quarter-finals (19/20 and 26/27 April) and the second edition of the EHF Cup Finals (17/18 May). According the regulations it will not be possible to play both legs at one venue.

EHF Cup Qualification Round 3 pairings:

OIF Arendal (NOR) vs HC Sporta Hlohovec (SVK)

Füchse Berlin (GER) vs HC Meshkov Brest (BLR)

Chambery Savoie Handball (FRA) vs Alpla HC Hard (AUT)

Mors-Thy Handbold (DEN) vs HCM Constanta (ROU)

Rukometni Klub Porec (CRO) vs Sporting CP (POR)

Aarhus Haandbold (DEN) vs HC Zomimak-M (MKD)

Skjern Handbold (DEN) vs RK Vojvodina (SRB)

HBC Nantes (FRA) vs Elverum Handball Herrar (NOR)

SL Benfica (POR) vs Pick Szeged (HUN)

Besiktas JK (TUR) vs Csurgoi KK (HUN)

IFK Kristianstad (SWE) vs Stiinta Municipal Dedeman Bacau (ROU)

RK Nexe (CRO) vs Reale Ademar Leon (ESP)

Kadetten Schaffhausen (SUI) vs TSV Hannover-Burgdorf (GER)

Tatran Presov (SVK) vs RK Maribor Branik (SLO)

HC Kaustik (RUS) vs Montpellier Agglomeration HB (FRA)

AEK Athens (GRE) vs Lugi HF (SWE)


TEXT: EHF / br