19.02.2016, 13:40◄ last page     

ROUND PREVIEW: Just eight teams left in the Women’s EHF Cup, Bundesliga teams TuS Metzingen and HC Leipzig see a lot of each other this week.

All-German, Scandinavian clashes throw-off quarter-finals

TuS Metzingen (GER) vs HC Leipzig (GER)
Friday 19 February, 20:00hrs (local time)

The two German Bundesliga teams TuS Metzingen and HC Leipzig will be seeing a lot of each other this week, as they match-up again for the second time in 48 hours.

On Wednesday (17 February) night, Metzingen won their Bundesliga match at home 26:23 and for this Women’s EHF Cup Quarter-Final first leg they will again have home advantage in the Paul Horn Arena in Tübingen, south-west Germany.

Leipzig will be seeking revenge after that league defeat, but in the two-legged quarter-finals, a repeat of that three-goal league loss is maybe not the worst result as it still gives them a good chance to clinch a semi-final berth in the return match, at home, on Sunday 28 February.

Randers HK (DEN) vs H 65 Höörs Handbollsklubb (SWE)
Saturday 20 February, 16:00 (local time)

As well as the all-German clash, there is also a Scandinavian derby in the first leg of the quarter-finals of the Women’s EHF Cup.

For the second time in succession in the Women’s EHF Cup this season, Swedish side H 65 Höörs Handbollsklubb will face a Danish team. Having eliminated Silkeborg-Voel KFUM in the Last 16, Höörs now play Randers HK, who won the tournament in 2010.

“Randers will be a big challenge for us,” said Höör coach Niklas Harris to “However, I actually think they suit us a little better than Silkeborg did because they have some bigger and heavier players than them.

“This should enable us to run a bit with them and get the opportunity to score some goals on counter attacks and fast breaks.

“Against Silkeborg we came back from being nine goals down,” he continued. “We can probably not risk that against Randers, but even if we are three or four goals down after the away match, I think we will have a very good chance to reach the semi-final stage.”

HC Odense (DEN) vs ASC Corona 2010 Brasov (ROU)
Sunday 21 February, 16:00 (local time)

Another Danish team will be fighting for a semi-final place and HC Odense will hope they can get off to a good start at home when they line-up against Romanian side ASC Corona 2010 Brasov at the Odense Idraetshal.

“I would say that Brasov is a typically Romanian team with a physically strong defence and a relatively fast attacking play,” said Odense coach Flemming Dam Larsen to “If our defence and our goalkeepers can do as well as they have done recently then we have a rather good chance for the aggregate win.”

Astrakhanochka (RUS) vs Dunaujvarosi Kohasz Kezilabda Akademia (HUN)
Friday 26 February, 18:00 (local time - match to be played in Hungary)

The last tie in the first-leg round of the Women’s EHF Cup Quarter-Finals is the Russian-Hungarian duel between Astrakhanochka and Dunaujvarosi Kohasz Kezilabda Akademia.

Both legs will be played in Hungary, at the Sport Hall of Dunaujvaros, in a double header next weekend (26 & 28 February).

Astrakhanochka easily overcome their Russian rivals Dinamo-Sinara in the Last 16, winning clearly on aggregate 54:45 after a five-goal win in their first match at home in the Zvezdniy Sportcomplex in Astrakhan, followed by a 23:19 victory in the second leg in Dynamo Volgograd Sport Hall in Volgograd, with their dangerous Belarusian right-back Karyna Yezhykava scoring 14 goals over the two games.

The Hungarian team from Dunaujvaros also had a national derby in the Last 16, but their path was far from easy against Siofok KC, led by Danish coach Christian Dalmose. After winning the first leg comfortably at home by five (24:19), they lost the second leg by five 28:23 which meant the aggregate score was 47:47 – but Laszlo Gyorgy’s side went through to the quarter-finals thanks to scoring more away goals.

That scare will certainly prepare the Hungarians well for the match against the Russians, but with over a week to go and league games to be played until the first leg, a lot can change.

TEXT: Peter Bruun / amc

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