Kielce book their ticket to CologneArticle
«Go back

QUARTER-FINAL MATCH REVIEW: Kielce become the second team to qualify for the VELUX EHF FINAL4 in Cologne with another two-goal victory over Vardar on Sunday

Kielce book their ticket to Cologne

The second part of Dujshebaev derby ended in favour of the father once again. 

Despite a much better performance from the younger Dujshebaev, Alex (nine goals), HC Vardar were not able to make up for their narrow loss in the first leg match last Saturday.

Thus Polish Champions KS Vive Tauron Kielce are the second team to book the journey to Cologne.

VELUX EHF Champions League Quarter-final Leg 2
KS Vive Tauron Kielce (POL) vs HC Vardar (MKD) 33:31 (16:14)
First leg 22:20. Agg. 55:51, KS Vive Tauron Kielce qualify for the VELUX EHF FINAL4

If anyone thought Talant Dujshebaev had run out of surprises, they were mistaken. The coach started Sunday’s match with Piotr Chrapkowski in Manuel Strlek’s usual positon on the wing. 

The back did not score any goals from the wing, but he proved useful in defence against dangerous Alex Dujshebaev. 

The son of Kielce’s coach only managed to score his first goal in the 22nd minute, which meant Vardar’s attack had to be led by backs Sergei Gorbok and Igor Karacic.

The guests' defence worked quite well, but could not cope with their opponent’s powerful distance shots. 

When Vardar moved their defensive line forward, Julen Aguinagalde immediately took advantage of the empty space left on the six-metre line. After a laidback pass from Uros Zorman, the mighty Basque easily defeated Arpad Sterbik and took the score to 8:6.

The rest of the first half saw a more or less equal game, finishing with an eye-catching in-flight goal from Michal Jurecki off a pass from Tomasz Rosinski right before the whistle.


After the break the team from Skopje got to work to level the two-goal deficit. 

Ten minutes into the half the score was even at 22:22, but Raul Gonzalez’s side still had the two-goal gap from the first leg loss at home to make up for.

Even though Alex Dujshebaev was bending over backwards running, passing and scoring goals, he was not able to give his team the ticket to Cologne. 

The last three minutes of the match were full of emotions thanks to impressive saves from Slawomir Szmal, clever steals by defenders and suspensions for both teams.

In the very last moment Manuel Strlek sealed the win with a 33:31 score for Kielce.

Despite the result, both coaches were pleased with the match. 

“We fought against one of the best teams in the world. Congratulations for Kielce. They played very well in both matches and I think we wasted our chance at home,” said Vardar coach Gonzalez.

“Kielce has lost only one game so far. They're an amazing team. In decisive moments we didn’t play as well as we hoped and that’s the reason we lost today,” added Alex Dujshebaev.

“I’m very happy we won the game as it was a hard battle. The atmosphere in the hall was the best I’ve ever experienced since I worked in Kielce. It’s a pity that both my son and friend didn’t make it to the FINAL4,” said Talant Dujshebaev.

TEXT: Magda Pluszewska / cg