05.10.2017, 18:42◄ last page     

ROUND PREVIEW: The Men's Challenge Cup starts Friday night with a game between Handball Kaerjeng and debutants HC Shakhtar.

Action starting in Luxembourg on Friday night

The 2017/18 edition of the Men's Challenge Cup launches in Luxembourg on Friday night. Handball Kaerjeng will be trying to make better than the previous four years and make it past the second round, when they host HC Shakhtar-SHWSM for a double-header.

Unlike Kaerjeng, the Ukrainian visitors – who consist entirely of domestic players - are debutants in Europe this season. The return match is taking place already on Saturday evening.

Another Luxembourgish team, Red Boys Differdange, have slightly prouder traditions in Europe than Kaerjeng have. In fact, the Red Boys were in the VELUX EHF Champions League qualifiers last season, without reaching the group phase, though.

On Saturday, they receive Lithuanian Kauno Azuolas-KTU Kaunas for the first leg in the Centre Sportif de Differdange.

This means that two European debutants will be visiting Luxembourg this weekend, as the Kaunas side are also starting their first European campaign in history with this round.

Cambridge HC are in Europe and in the Challenge Cup for the third time in their history.

In the 2014/15 season as well as last year, the team from famous university city reached Round 3, and in their attempt to make it a third time, their journey is leading them to Serbia.

Here, the British side is facing ORK Samot 65 who are new to European handball. The two teams meet in a double-header in Arandjelovac, the two matches being played Saturday and Sunday evening.

A.C. PAOK's finest international achievement so far has been reaching the group phase of the EHF Champions League back in the 2009/10 season.
This season, the Greek team are celebrating their European comeback after three years of absence by going to Malta.

Here, they are meeting Aloysians Von Taine who will try to make it better than their only previous Europen campaign. In the 2011/12 season, the Maltese club reached exactly Round 2 of the Challenge Cup. The first leg in Msida, Malta is throwing off Saturday afternoon.

TEXT: Peter Bruun / br

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