Plock survive Elverum test with strong second half
Despite playing almost a quarter of the match a man down, Orlen Wisla Plock showed their character with a come-from-behind win in Elverum on Sunday night.
The Norwegian champions will be disappointed with letting an opportunity to claim a big win slip, having lead by three goals at one point.
Elverum Handball (NOR) vs Orlen Wisla Plock 28:30 (15:13)
Following their straightforward win at home to Thun in Round 1 of the VELUX EHF Champions League, this first away test for Xavier Sabate and the new-look Plock side was going to reveal a lot.
As for Elverum, their loss in Bucharest left them with a point to prove and they went about proving it right from the get go, matching Plock in the early stages.
Sigvaldi Gudjonsson was having a field day for Elverum, taking every chance he got from open play and the penalty line, punishing Plock’s disciplinary problems, which gave the hosts a 14:11 lead shortly before the break.
Down by two at half-time, Plock came out for the second half more confident and smarter with their aggressive play, but Elverum still held the lead with 12 minutes left to play.
Lovro Mihic and Plock's top scorer Michal Daszek began to find the back of the net with more ease, as it was Elverum’s turn to suffer two-minute suspensions.
Although the hosts kept it interesting right until the end, Plock held on for a two-goal win to maintain their perfect start to the season and go clear at the top of Group D.
After the match Sabate noted the improved togetherness as a big factor in his team's turnaround, "In first half we had little problems after getting a lot of suspensions, Tine Poklar played very good and made it difficult for us. But in second half we changed some things in our defence and played more together.”
Author: Chris O'Reilly / at