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18.02.2017, 20:40◄ last page     

GROUP A REVIEW: PSG remain Barcelona’s only challengers after a lucky win, while Plock make a huge step towards the Last 16.

Remili’s buzzer-beater shocks Flensburg

A buzzer-beating kempa goal by Nedim Remili secured Paris Saint-Germain Handball a crucial 34:33 win in Flensburg. The result means that the German side are now out of the race for the top position, while PSG remain only two points below leaders FC Barcelona Lassa.

In the other group A game of the day Plock made a huge step towards the Last 16 by beating Bjerringbro-Silkeborg on home ground. With eight points in their account now, the Poles are four points ahead of the Danish champions with only three rounds left.

  • Due to Plock’s win, five of the six Last 16 teams are now confirmed from Group A: First Barcelona, PSG and Veszprem qualified, now Kiel and Flensburg have proceeded
  • Flensburg were defeated on home ground for the third time in the group phase after losing against Barcelona and Kiel
  • Top scorer for PSG, and in the game, was Swedish line player Jesper Nielsen with seven goals.
  • Gilberto Duarte (7) and Dmitry Zhitnikov (6) were the best scorers for Plock in their crucial win.
  • Bjerringbro have not won a single point in the group phase since 16 October 2016, when they beat Plock in the first match


Orlen Wisla Plock (POL) vs. Bjerringbro-Silkeborg (DEN) 28:25 (13:15)

Thanks to a brilliant start from Portuguese player Gilberto Duarte, who netted in three of the first five goals for the ‘Oilers’ of Plock, the Polish side had the upper hand in the first minutes, ahead 5:2 and 6:3. But then, BSV struck back - and the Danes had their best periods when they were up one man – best shown when Lovro Mihic was sent off for two minutes and the visitors scored three times, to bring the scores level at 6:6.

After 30 minutes, five of their 15 goals were scored when Plock were shorthanded. Despite great support from the stands, the hosts lost the momentum and their pace, mainly in attack.

Bjerringbro took the lead, extended it to two goals several time and even missed a great chance to enter the locker rooms with a 16:13 advantage as Plock’s goalkeeper Marcin Wichary saved their last shot.

Twisted knee, game turns
After 34 minutes, BSV were ahead again by three - but Johan Hansen paid his counter-attack goal (17:14) with a high price as he twisted his knee and could not continue.

Bjerringbro were in a state of shock and conceded a 0:4 series, as their quite comfortable advance had turned into a 18:17 deficit.

Everything was open again, Plock were on a high and even a red card against Sime Ivic could not stop the Polish league runners-up. Within 12 minutes, they had turned a 17:14 loss into a 23:20 advance, and seemed to be heading for a win, mainly as Russian back court ace Zhitnikov was on fire.

But BSV did not get a second chance and after a treble strike the result was levelled again. At 23:23 both sides were extremely nervous, missing numerous chances and causing technical mistakes.

After five goal-less minutes, Zhitnikov ended the spell with his sixth strike (25:23) and BSV could have taken the lead again, but missed crucial chances, like when Nicolaj Nielsen hammered a penalty next to the goal or Rasmus Kier failed by a counter attack against Wichary.

61 seconds before the end, Plock coach Przybecki took his final team time-out - and Romanian Valentin Ghionea knew what he had to do, as netted in to make it 27:25 and two points for his side.

Statements after the match:

Peter Bredsdorff-Larsen, Bjerringbro-Silkeborg coach: “It was a well-deserved victory of Plock and we were very satisfied with the first half. We had a two-goal advantage and we could have increased it to three. After the break, we were not so good and Wisla made a great comeback.

“The Oilers had a fantastic goalkeeper and the injury of our right-wing player influenced our performance at the end of the game. We are disappointed, although we knew that Plock are a very hard team to play.”

Rasmus Jensen, Bjerringbro-Silkeborg player said: “We had a very good first half. We fully believed that we could get one or two points but in the second Wisla had their moments and used them.”

Piotr Przybecki, Orlen Wisla Plock coach said: “We came to court fully motivated but we had a lot of problems in the first half in defence, mostly with Michael Knudsen. We changed our defence to 5-1 in the second half and our goalkeeper Marcin Wichary was a key player in our victory.

“Also after red card for Sime Ivić we had some problems on the right back position, but Michał Daszek did a really good job.”

Dan-Emil Racotea, Orlen Wisla Plock player: “The game changed all the time but in the end, we are very pleased with final victory.”

SG Flensburg-Handewitt (GER) vs. Paris Saint-Germain Handball (FRA) 33:34 (18:15)  

Without their flu-suffering double IHF World Handball Player of the Year, Mikkel Hansen, PSG had to travel to Flensburg for a tough game, but despite missing the Danish hammer Paris could count on a star-studded squad.

Nikola Karabatic mainly imprinted the first 20 minutes for the French champions, but on the other side Flensburg were perfectly adapted for the challenge as the Germans started stronger, but could not cast off the visitors.

Both world-class goalkeepers - Mattias Andersson (SG) and Thierry Omeyer (PSG) - did not have that much impact on the attack-orientated game, which was intermediately turned around by Paris in the middle of the first half.

But within the first 30 minutes, Paris were ahead by two goals only once (10:8), while Flensburg did it six times (mainly in the final stages) - though their mastermind Thomas Mogensen had to leave the court with a swollen right eye and even needed to be transported to the hospital later following a hit to the eye by a finger.

As the middle block of the Paris defence was like a wall, Flensburg’s wings such as Hampus Wanne or Lasse Svan found the gaps. And it was Svan who netted in for the first three-goal lead (29th minute) which also was the half-time score (18:15).

With the start of the second half, Omeyer was (like in the victorious first leg) replaced by Gorazd Skof and the rundown of this stage was simply run-and-gun.

Free-flowing goals

With no defence on both sides, the teams were scoring on all cylinders. Flensburg initially extended the gap to four goals, but PSG fought back and nearly bridged the gap, when four-times World Champion Daniel Narcisse hammered the ball in (23:22 to Flensburg) - and Skof saved several shots, being much stronger than Omeyer before him.

In the 46th minute a penalty goal of German national team captain Uwe Gensheimer levelled the score (26:26) for the first time since 12:12 in the first half.

Flensburg’s attack motor got stuck, while Paris had improved in defence and kept their efficiency in attack. When former Berlin line player Jesper Nielsen netted (28:27) with his sixth individual goal, PSG had finished their long way to take the lead again - and crunch time had started.

This was something of a wake-up call for his Swedish national teammate Jim Goittfridsson, who then scored three of Flensburg’s next four goals to get his team back ahead at 31:29.

But Paris took the psychological advantage when shorthanded as Luka Stepancic - on the bench for two minutes – they took the chance to equalise again (32:32) and Flensburg had one player less on court in the final stages.
With the last minute about to start, the score was 33:33.

Flensburg experienced right back Holger Glandorf saw his pass intercepted by Gensheimer and Paris had the ball for the last 12 seconds.

PSG coach Noka Serdarusic called a team time-out and then watched Gensheimer run down the other end and set up Nedim Remili for a kempa goal to get that crucial win.

“Unfortunately, we knew that Paris like to score this way, but we could not avoid this goal,” said Flensburg coach Ljubomir Vranjes, adding: “We could have decided the match when we had the last one-man advantage - it really hurts that we did not take a point from this great match.”

French World Champion Kentin Mahe, who faced six of his team mates from the national team, was disappointed too. “We would have deserved at least a draw, but we did not play patient enough in the final stages.”

On the other hand, PSG’s German left wing Gensheimer was smiling all over. “We remained cool and clever when were down by three goals and our goalkeeper Gorazd Skof saved the big points,” he said. “Definitely, this thrilling match was a true delight for the fans.”

TEXT: Bjorn Pazen/amc

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