|07.10.2016, 15:25||◄ last page|
FEATURE: The 2015/16 All-star playmaker visits the city where he spent the two previous seasons. In the Match of the Week he is determined to take both points back to Poland.
Bombac returns to Szeged in a yellow jersey
For the third season in a row Vive Tauron Kielce and MOL-Pick Szeged meet in the group phase of the VELUX EHF Champions League.
New European champions from Poland won the first two encounters, while last season the rivals shared the spoils with one home win for each as both matches were decided by only one goal.
It was a season of Dean Bombac. Slovenian playmaker was not only orchestrating the attack of Szeged, he also became the top scorer of the Hungarian side with 101 goals.
Even though his team was ousted by THW Kiel in the Last 16, Bombac's performance was still crowned as he won the All-star team award as the best centre back.
Last spring he had already known it was his last season in the blue Szeged jersey, as he had already signed a new contract with Kielce. In the team of defending champions he has joined forces for the first time on the club level with one of his role models and fellow Slovenian Uros Zorman.
"Moving to a club with the highest ambition was decisive. Kielce are now a reigning European champion and I am part of an excellent team. I spent two fabulous years in Hungary, where I have learned a lot, improved my game with Juan Carlos Pastor, but will not rest on that.
"I can still improve, I hope I will do that under Talant Dujshebaev as well,” says Bombac.
Unfortunate return from Rio and wonderful fresh impressions of Kielce
The 27-year-old Slovenian international suffered a shoulder injury on the eve of Olympic quarter-final match against eventual Olympic champions Denmark. Maybe the outcome of the Rio tournament would not be the same if “Deki” had played for Slovenia, who knows.
“That was a huge personal disappointment, I missed the matches against Poland in the group phase and Denmark for the semi-finals. I had to go home, and watch it on TV.
It was very hard for me and of course I knew I would also miss first couple of matches of the new season for the new club.”
Fortunately Kielce fans did not have to wait too long for his first start. The club introduced Bombac in the first home match of the European season as Dujshebaev let Bombac play the last fifteen minutes of the match against Kristianstad.
“That was thrilling! When I entered the playing court, and especially when I scored the crowd reacted with a huge cheer. They called my name, I could not believe It. They welcomed me with opened arms, the feeling is hard to describe with words!”
Bombač now has to travel back to Szeged in a different jersey. He could not hide his affection.
“I am really happy that I will return to Szeged. Last two years meant a lot to me. Before I arrived in Szeged I had a difficult period. My home club Cimos Koper went bankrupt and the same happened in Minsk with Dinamo.
"I played couple of months in Aix en Provence and I needed a stable club and season. I found that in Hungary and will never forget that,” he added.
Looking forward for bigger achievements once again in yellow
Regardless of emotions Bombac is returning to win points for Kielce.
“Maybe, If I will get the chance to play, I will not celebrate the goals, if I scored them. But I will certainly give everything to win the game.”
The injury is almost history. The shoulder does not hurt anymore but still Kielce fans will have to be patient. Bombac has still to adopt the new system and let his shoulder go for a full-power shot so often seen last season.
He knows also It is going to be hard to win in the Szeged city hall.
“The fans in Szeged know how to make things difficult for the opponent. The team went through a lot of changes, ten players including myself left and there are eleven newcomers. I am glad that there are new Slovenians in the club, my friends Matej Gaber, Stas Skube and Mario Sostaric and of course also some ex-Kielce players Buntic and Sego.
"Pastor already did a great job for the matches against Löwen and especially Zagreb. They are strong, and they can become even stronger. But I will repeat myself. We are travelling there for two points.”
Dean Bombač was close to the VELUX EHF FINAL4 already in the season 2011/12 when Talant Dujshebaev with Atletico Madrid stopped his Koper. Five years later they join forces in Poland. Perhaps it is just a coincidence that the club colours of Koper and Kielce are the same.
TEXT: Uros Volk / br