Dinamo looking forward to staying on topArticle
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GROUP A PREVIEW: The Russian champions hope to keep their unbeaten record intact and break the losing streak versus Krim.

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Dinamo looking forward to staying on top

With only two points separating the teams in Group A both duels in the third round are of utmost importance. Leipzig are looking to prolong their winning streak in the "Germanic" showdown with Hypo, while Dinamo will try to remain on top position after their "Slavic" clash with Krim.

HC Leipzig (GER) vs Hypo Niederösterreich (AUT)
Friday 31 October at 14.30 hrs local time, live on ehfTV

After convincing defeats in the opening round both Leipzig and Hypo were poised as underdogs in the group. But spirited performances against Krim (30:24) and Dinamo (25:25) respectively in the last round have put them right back in the fight for the top two spots.

It remains to be seen how far the two young and inexperienced teams can stretch, but a win in the Leipzig Arena would be a big boost for either one.

Leipzig will have a slight advantage as hosts. However they will most probably have to play without German international Saskia Lang, who has an injured finger. In her absence Maura Visser should increase her share of responsibility in the backcourt, while Karolina Kudlacz remains the biggest attacking threat.

Hypo have no injury worries and are hoping that tradition will be on their side. In the five European Cup encounters so far, Hypo have won four. They met in 2010 for the last time when - interestingly - the visiting team has won on both occasions. If Francielle Gomes da Rocha and Gorica Acimovic retain their attacking form, Hypo will be a tough nut to crack.  

Dinamo-Sinara (RUS) vs RK Krim Mercator (SLO)
Saturday 1 November at 14.00 hrs local time, live on ehfTV

After establishing themselves as group favourites with victories in the prologue both Krim and Dinamo have faltered in away games of the Round 2.

Dinamo have quickly forgotten the tie in Austria and are concentrated in securing another pair of points which would keep them in the pole position.

Dinamo are very strong in one-on-one situations and if Daria Dmitrieva and Anita Gace have their day, opposition will be in a lot of trouble.

Krim have made the long journey to Volgograd and coach Marta Bon has tried to pick her players up after the defeat in Germany. There were far too many technical errors made by the Slovenian champions and this is an area most in need of improvement.

They are expecting Mirjeta Bajramoska to regain her shooting form, and Alja Koren to keep her attacking prowess. The teams have met four times in the EHF Champions league so far with Krim emerging victorious every time.

TEXT: Grega Sever / br