Round 3 didn’t bring any major upsets. It was still a pretty entertaining round with a bunch of great saves and goals. The reigning champions Vardar are still unbeaten, whereas Vojvodina is still without a win. Final Four battle is slowly starting to heat up!
Derby of the round: Vardar- Meshkov Brest 31:23 (17:14)
Vardar is looking unbeatable at the moment. Raul Gonzalez’s team looks fully prepared both physically and tactically, just confirming they are the primary favorites to become the SEHA- Gazprom League champion once again. Meshkov is a great team, but they looked powerless at times to stop the Macedonians. Vuko Borozan was the man of the match with 6 goals, on the other side Rade Mijatovic saved 10 shots and Rastko Stojkovic scored 5. Around 1500 fans that showed up according to the official match report were kept entertained during the whole 60 minutes. A pretty good derby of the round, despite a big victory for Vardar.
Tatran- Celje PL 25:26 (13:12)
A whole range of amazing individual performances, we don’t even know where to start! Urban Lesjak had 14 saves and Ziga Mlakar scored 9 goals for Celje. For the hosts, Bruno Butorac had his day with 10 goals. He did have some help in Igor Chupryna who saved 9 out of 28 shots for his team. Tatran Handball Arena was pretty full, as almost 2500 people were there to see this amazing match. It was close until the last minute; Tatran even scored the goal to tie it up, but it was clearly after the final whistle. All in all, a great match, we hope to see many more from these teams in their quest for the Final 4 spot.
Metalurg- Nexe 29:22 (15:10)
Two teams with quite a lot in common; they both have Croatian head coaches- Cervar in Metalurg and Horvat in Nexe, both are the second best teams in their countries and both are fairly young, even though Nexe does have some more experienced players in their roster. Metalurg had been a better team in this encounter, but again Nexe didn’t manage to showcase their full potential, similar to a match against PPD Zagreb in the first round. Pesevski and Ilic scored 6 for the hosts, Barisic Jaman and a newcomer Sipic scored 4 each to lead the visitors. 1500 people were watching the match live, we hope many more will come after a performance like this from Metalurg.
Vojvodina- PPD Zagreb 21:29 (7:13)
Vojvodina had 2 matches against the Greek team Doukas during the weekend in the EHF Cup qualifiers round 1. It probably left a mark, as the Serbian champions played a really bad match, especially in the first half. They are still the only team without a single win. PPD Zagreb got their second win of the season, they are now one of the four teams that have 2 wins and 1 loss on the season. This was a match where PPD Zagreb chose to rest some players for an important match against Kristianstad. In this match we once more had a chance to see that PPD Zagreb needs another right back, meaning the signing of Zarko Markovic was a perfect choice. Arian Jovic in goal had a very good first half with 5 saves on 13 shots. It was a real team performance from the Lions, as 11 players were on the scoresheet. For Vojvodina, hard work awaits if they want to start winning some games.
Gorenje Velenje- Dinamo 34:24 (18:11)
Gorenje recorded their first win of the season in this round. It was well-deserved, they outplayed Dinamo both defensively and offensively, led by their captain Niko Medved who scored on all of his 7 attempts. Haseljic and Potocnik added 5 each and Klemen Ferlin continued his fine form, contributing with 9 saves on 24 shots. Dinamo couldn’t get anything to go, perhaps Petar Zujovic had been their best player, he scored 7 goals and assisted on 3 of them. Gorenje enjoyed support from around 1200 fans, but it seemed like much more. Atmosphere in this club is looking very positive despite consecutive losses at their start of the season. A much needed victory for Gorenje, they hope to find themselves in a position at the Final 4.
This round started on Friday 8th of September and finished on Tuesday the 12th. Over 7000 fans attended this round’s matches. All five of them provided some great moments, make sure to watch the highlights and vote for the best goals and saves of the round. SEHA- Gazprom League is back next week, after the Champions League action during the weekend.