25.03.2016, 10:10◄ last page     

ROUND PREVIEW: Six teams compete on Saturday and Sunday to follow ABC/Uminho to the semi-finals of the Men's Challenge Cup

Crunch time in the Challenge Cup's semi-finals

After Portuguese side ABC/UMinho already secured their place in the semi-finals of the Men's Challenge Cup last weekend with an aggregate win against Wacker Thun (30:23 / 34:34), it will decided this Saturday and Sunday which three teams will follow.

One club that has already carved out a good position for themselves are FyllingenBergen from Norway who pushed the door to the semi-finals wide open with their convincing 31:20 win at home against Dutch side FIQAS Aalsmeer last Saturday.

Ahead of this Saturday's encounter in the Sporthal De Bloemhof in Aalsmeer Fyllingen's assistant coach Erlend Aam says that his team should not let this opportunity slip from their hands.

"We are in a good position, but it is obviously not over yet," he was quoted on the club's website. "We have to go down there and produce another convincing performance. We should not let this opportunity to reach the semi-final pass."

While FyllingenBergen are the favourites to reach the semi-final, things are considerably closer between St. Petersburg HC and S.L. Benfica.

The Russian team has to catch up with a four goal deficit when they receive the Portuguese team for the return match in the Sibur Arena on Saturday.

Benfica won the first leg in Lisbon 24:20, so the tie can still go either way.

The odds are slightly different in Prague on Sunday night.

HC Dukla Praha earned a 27:27 draw in their away meeting with KV Sasja HC in Belgium, and this result gives the Czech team a very good chance to reach the semi-finals, when they receive the Belgian side in the DHC Sport Hall SK Slavia Praha on Sunday.

TEXT: Peter Bruun / ts

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