Champions Györ begin title defence in flying formArticle
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GROUP C/D PREVIEW: Reigning champions host Sävehof on Sunday, while SCM Ramnicu Valcea’s first DELO WOMEN’S EHF Champions League match in six years marks the beginning of the new season
»2019-20 Women's News

Champions Györ begin title defence in flying form

Title holders Győri Audi ETO KC look in brilliant form ahead of their DELO WOMEN’S EHF Champions League opener against Swedish champions IK Sävehof, who aim to improve on last season’s winless campaign.

Elsewhere in group D, debutants DHK Banik Most visit Slovenian record champion RK Krim Mercator.

High-quality European handball will be tasted once again in Ramnicu Valcea, six years after Oltchim’s demise, as the new incarnation of the Romanian powerhouse host SG BBM Bietigheim in the opening match of the DELO WOMEN’S EHF Champions League.

A sold-out arena will cheer for the Romanian champions, while group C’s other clash sees a strengthened and more experienced Buducnost face a depleted Brest side.

SCM Ramnicu Valcea (ROU) vs SG BBM Bietigheim (GER)
Friday 4 October, 18:30 local time, live on

  • this will be the first game played in the “Traian” Arena in the DELO WOMEN’S EHF Champions League, since Oltchim folded in 2013. The game will be sold out
  • the hosts lost the Romanian Super Cup against CSM Bucuresti, but won their clash in the domestic league, 20:19, two weeks ago
  • coach Florentin Pera will make his debut in Europe’s premier competition, after leading the Romanian champions into the Qualifying Round 3 in last season’s Women’s EHF Cup
  • Bietigheim are eyeing a main round berth in the last season with coach, Martin Albertsen, on the team’s bench

Buducnost (MNE) vs Brest Bretagne Handball (FRA)
Saturday 5 October, 19:00 local time, live on

  • the Montenegrin side look to secure wins in the “Moraca” Arena once again, as they lost four games there in the past two seasons
  • the game will mark the return of wings Jovanka Radicevic and Majda Mehmedovic for Buducnost, both summer transfers from CSM Bucuresti
  • with a return to the main round as their main goal this season, Brest will be without playmaker Isabelle Gulldén, who aims to return in December after giving birth, while goalkeeper Cleopatre Darleux and playmaker Elodie Le Calve are pregnant
  • Buducnost are undefeated in two games played between the sides in the competition, winning the home match, 28:27, and drawing away, 22:22, in last season’s main round

RK Krim Mercator (SLO) vs DHK Banik Most (CZE)
Sunday 6 October, 17:00 local time, live on

  • the Slovenian squad has undergone a number of changes over the summer after reaching the main round last season
  • Tamara Mavsar and Polona Baric are ready to lead their side, which must integrate 13 newcomers
  • DHK Banik Most won the qualification tournament, beating Turkish side Kastamonu Belediyesi GSK 35:33
  • this is the Czech club’s debut in the DELO WOMEN’S EHF Champions League

Győri Audi ETO KC (HUN) vs IK Sävehof (SWE)
Sunday, 6 October, 17:00 local time, live on

  • Győr is in a great form as they have won all of their five domestic league matches, with newcomers Katarina Bulatovic, Amanda Kurtovic, Beatrice Edwige and Estelle Nze Minko fitting well into Gábor Danyi’s system
  • both sides represent a Scandinavian style in handball with plenty of running
  • Sävehof rely mostly on young local players, with a few Danish players in the mix
  • the Swedish club is the only one to feature in both the men’s and women’s top flight competitions this season

TEXT: Adrian Costeiu, Bela Müller / cor