After Hungary lost the first match against Denmark, they didn’t have an easier task in the second round when they faced Spain. Spain defeated Czech Republic in the opening round so they were aiming for their second win. The match started with rock solid defenses and Hungary came out better from the first minutes of the game. After Spain equalized, they found themselves two goals ahead (4-6) but Hungary was running close behind. Spain punished every Hungarian mistake and after 23 minutes played, they were 3 goals ahead for the first time in the match (7-10). However, Hungary always found the way back and with a little more than 2 minutes left from the half, the result was equal once again (11-11). In the final 2 minutes of the half, Spain managed to keep a narrow, one-goal lead for the half time break (12-13).
Right in the first seconds of the second part, Hungary equalized and the team of Ljubomir Vranjes had several chances to take the lead but the finalizations weren’t good enough. Gonzalo Perez de Vargas came to the Spanish goal for the second half and he entered the game with important saves in crucial moments. The match followed the same flow: Spain took a 2-goal lead, then Hungary equalized but was never able to grab the lead. The two teams entered the last 10 minutes with a slight Spanish lead (22-23) that promised a lot of excitement in the final phase of the match. Hungary tried everything to catch a point but it was not possible this time as Spain never let them back to equal in the last 10 minutes. The Hungarian team was fighting hard and showed a great performance especially in defense, but the victory didn’t come (25-27). Spain is through to the Main Round while Hungary will play a life or death match against Czech Republic on Wednesday – if Denmark will defeat the Czechs in the evening match.
EHF EURO 2018 – Group D – Round 2
Hungary – Spain 25-27 (12-13)
Hungary: B. Bánhidi 6, Zs. Balogh 5, M. Lékai 4(3), D. Bartók 2, R. Bodó 2, I. Jamali 2, Á. Juhász 1, G. Császár 1(1), U. Vilovski 1, Sz. Szöllősi 1
Spain: A. Dujshebaev 4, V. Rivera 4(2), A. Arino 4, A. Figueras 4, D. Sarmiento 3, E. Gurbindo 3, D. Balaguer 2, F. Sole 2, G. Perez de Vargas 1
Penalties: 4/4 ; 2/3
Suspensions: 10 minutes ; 4 minutes
Player of the match: Máté Lékai (HUN)