If the talk is about the Women’s EHF Cup, one thing is sure: ÉRD would meet Issy Paris on the way. Two years ago, Issy won on away goals, but last year, it was ÉRD that qualified for the Group Stage with a double victory over the French team. The Hungarian bronze medalists strengthened their squad in the summer: players like Gabriella Tóth or Jamina Roberts arrived to the team while the core of the team stayed together in Érd. On the other hand, Issy went through several changes in the summer: one of their best players, Stine Oftedal signed with Győri Audi ETO, Coralie Lassource went to ÉRD and some others also left Paris. Lois Abbingh and Silje Solberg stayed and some players like Sonja Frey or Chloe Bulleux arrived to one of the most beautiful cities of Europe, still all the odds were on ÉRD’s side before the game.
ÉRD started the way they were supposed to start: Issy struggled hard against the strong home wall and excellent Kinga Janurik, while ÉRD was scoring easy goals in a sequence, mostly by the lightning fast Katarina Krpez Slezak. Already in the 11th minute, the difference was seven goals and the two-digit difference was around the corner. Issy was mostly effective from the pivot position but despite the great performance, Crina Pintea wasn’t enough alone to keep up with ÉRD. The home team was playing very well and managed to keep the momentum in the entire first half, and in the 27th minute, the difference grew to 10 goals (16-6). This gap stayed for the halftime break, Katarina Krpez Slezak netted as many times as the whole French team in the first half (18-8).
In the beginning of the second half, there was no stopping for ÉRD, and with a good start, there were no more questions left for the rest of the match (24-9). In the last 20 minutes of the game, Issy managed to avoid the complete knock-out: after being 15 goals behind, in the last quarter of the game, the guests came back to around 10 goals difference. In this period, Sonja Frey was the best player for the French side, but there was no danger regarding the victory of ÉRD. The home crowd could celebrate a very confident, 10-goal victory against their old opponent Issy, and this means the team of Edina Szabó already has one foot in the Group Stage.
On Saturday, two more Hungarian teams took the courts in the EHF Cup. 2016 winners Dunaújvárosi Kohász KA played in Copenhagen against Kobenhavn Handbold, and their one-goal defeat can be promising for the second match in Dunaújváros. DVSC-TVP has been struggling with injuries lately and they didn’t have an easy job ahead travelling to Craiova. The five-goal victory from Craiova puts the odds more likely on the Romanian side, but DVSC still has a return leg in Debrecen to save the duel.
EHF Cup – Qualification Round 3 – 1st leg
ÉRD – Issy Paris Hand 31-21 (18-8)
ÉRD: Katarina Krpez Slezak 10(1), A. Bulatovic 4, J. Roberts 4, K. Klivinyi 3, Sz. Gávai 2, M. Signate 2, L. Szabó 2, M. González 1, G. Tóth 1, N. Kiss 1, A. Kisfaludy 1
Issy Paris: S. Frey 8, C. Pintea 5, M. Fofana 2, L. Abbingh 2, M. Deba 1, T. Horacek 1, H. Oftedal 1, O. Sercien Ugolin 1
Kobenhavn Handbold – Dunaújvárosi Kohász KA 22-21 (11-12)
Kobenhavn: L. Fons 5, M. Bidstrup 4, L. Björnsen 4, J. Alm 2, H. Blomstrand 2, D. Bont 2, M. Caswell 1, R. Ebbesen 1, M. Schoenaker 1
Dunaújvárosi KKA: A. Kovács 9, F. Bouti 3, A. Kazai 3, L. Dombi 1, K. Klujber 1, C. Micijevic 1, O. Monori 1, B. Szalai 1, D. Takács 1
SCM Craiova – DVSC-TVP 24-19 (16-11)
SCM Craiova: V. Ardean Elisei 6, D. Pricopi 6, F. Florianu 5, Z. Nikolic 3, M. Radoi 1, A.M. Ticu 1, N. Tudor 1, P. Vizitiu 1
DVSC-TVP: L. Grigel 7, A. Punko 4, J. Borges Lima 2, J. Hársfalvi 2, É. Vantara-Kelemen 2, Cs. Hajduch 1, A. Palsdottir 1