Presov make it three in a row to top Group CArticle
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GROUP C REVIEW: A solid Tatran Presov produced a strong second half to take their third successive VELUX EHF Champions League win of the year
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Presov make it three in a row to top Group C

Tatran Presov continued their perfect record with their third straight win in Group C in Skopje. Slavko Goluza's men re-wrote the club history once again as one of the four teams in the VELUX EHF Champions League to have won all three opening matches this season.

  • Tatran Presov top the group after third straight win
  • Metalurg remain bottom with no points
  • Ante Babic was the top scorer with six goals


HC Metalurg (MKD) vs TATRAN Presov (SVK) 24:29 (12:13)

Starting strongly, Presov quickly took a four-goal lead but failed to build on their early advantage. Metalurg scored five in a row and Danilo Brestovac's men were back in the game.

Metalurg, which has the youngest players in the Champions League this year with an average age of just 20 years old fielded, for the first time this season, 15-year-old Serbian talent Stefan Dodic. The Macedonian side were also counting on the firepower of their rising Croatian star Halil Jaganjac, who scored five times, but Presov made things easier for their opponents in the first half.

Numerous technical faults and a lack of discipline and defensive organisation by the visitors meant Metalurg were able to keep things tight.

Martin Tomovski kept Metalurg comfortable in the defence, unlike Igor Chupryna with Mario Cvitkovic for Presov. But Ukrainian national team goalkeeper Chupryna stepped in with the important saves in the second half.

Without injured Leon Vucko, Presov only had one typical line player available, Ante Babic, who did more than well with six goals on his tally. His co-operation with Janus Lapajne was key to his goals.

Metalurg's main problem was a lack of consistency through the whole 60 minutes. Especially in the last 20 minutes, once again, Metalurg failed to maintain the quality at both ends of the court. 

Presov shifted to a 1-5 defence formation, and Chupryna's saves offered a quicker transition phase and fast break opportunities. Finally the Presov wings had their say and the visitors eased ahead to a five-goal victory.

Brestovac was upbeat after the match, saying: "I’m not disappointed and I think we learned something and had some positives. If we can upgrade our game in the next couple of weeks I think we can win some games in the Champions League."


TEXT: Tomas Cuncik/jh