Boden win close encounter; Gomel, Rincon also through
Last season, the Last 16 of the Women’s Challenge Cup was the end for Boden IF’s European debut.
This season, they have made it one step further in the same competition, but they had to work hard in Israel this weekend before clinching their quarter-final berth.
After a 26:26 draw in the first leg of their Last 16 double-header away against Maccabi Srugo Rishon Lezion from Israel, Boden managed to book their ticket for the quarter-finals through a narrow 30:29 win after trailing 14:12 at half time in the second match.
With seven seconds left in the second match, Rishon Lezion had the chance of equalising at 30:30, which would have sent them on to the next round due to this being their technical away match, but they missed the opportunity.
Brazilians left back Jaqueline Anastacio produced an outstanding performance for Rishon Lezion with a total of 22 goals, 11 in each match, but this was not enough to see the home side progress
Spain heading for double representation
Spain are well on their way towards having double representation in the quarter-finals.
Rincon Fertilidad Malaga, who reached the last eight in their maiden European season last year, are there again after winning their double-header at home against KHF.Istogu from Kosovo in convincing style.
Malaga won the first match in the Polideportivo el Limon by a massive 40:9 margin. As a result they took things a little easier for the second leg on Sunday at the same venue, winning 21:13.
Rocasa Gran Canaria, who won the competition in 2016 and reached the final again last season, are close to following their fellow Spaniards to the next round.
On home ground in Telde Gran Canaria, Rocasa were only leading by two goals at half-time in the first leg against Ankara Yenimahalle BSK from Turkey.
In the second half Rocasa tightened their grip and the pace and increased their lead to 10 goals, as the match ended 33:23.
The result gives the former Challenge Cup winners a very good chance ahead of the return match in Ankara next Sunday.
Not much trouble for Gomel
HC Gomel did not have much trouble, as they took on Croatian ZRK Koka in a double header on home ground in Belarus.
After winning the first leg 30:18, largely thanks to 10 goals from Russian centre back Iuliia Golubeva, Gomel went on to win the return match the day by a similar margin of 32:23.
No matter what, the Netherlands are sure to be represented in the quarter-final, as two Dutch clubs are meeting in the Last 1.
After the first leg, H. V. Quintus have the better chance, having won 27:22 away against Geonius V&L who are back in European Cup handball for the first time in 14 years. Geonius will have to produce something special for their European return not to end next Saturday.Author: Peter Bruun/jh