Champions League: THW Kiel prevails against Pick Szeged

As of: September 21, 2023 8:53 p.m

THW Kiel also won its second game in the new season of the Handball Champions League. Coach Filip Jicha’s team prevailed against the Hungarian runner-up Pick Szeged on Thursday evening with 35:32 (16:15).

Everything didn’t work out yet, despite the confident performance from the break onwards. After the league defeats in Flensburg and against Melsungen, the success against Szeged was extremely important. Especially since Kiel has already fallen behind in the Bundesliga due to the bankruptcies.

Two returnees and a debutant also provided reason for celebration. Samir Bellahcene, the new THW goalkeeper, played his part in the victory with some strong saves in the final phase. Hendrik Pekeler and Sven Ehrig also contributed to this after a long injury break.

The Schleswig-Holstein team continues next Wednesday with the third game in the “premier class” at HC Pelister 08 Bitola in North Macedonia. The Bundesliga top game against SC Magdeburg will take place on September 30th.

Tough game, but happy about debut and comebacks

THW started the game against Szeged purposefully and circulated the ball very well through their own ranks. The “Zebras” often finished freely – but Roland Mikler always ended up in the Hungarian goal. The 39-year-old managed to save 40 percent of the balls in the first ten minutes. That’s why the Kiel team “only” led 6:4.

Bellahcene made his first appearance in the 14th minute. But the Frenchman was initially just as little a factor as Tomas Mrkva. Led by Dean Bombac, Szeged equalized again (13./6:6) and now stayed on. On the Kiel side, Elias Ellefsen á Skipagötu in particular made one or two missed throws too many.

Nevertheless, the spectators were offered a lot. For example, the comeback of pivot Pekeler, who was back on the field for the first time 102 days after his heel operation. The 32-year-old turned the ball wonderfully from his wrist around Mikler into the goal to make it 10:9 (20th).

But it still didn’t work enough – after a missed throw by Domagoj Duvnjak, Szeged took the lead for the first time with 13:12 (23rd). Nevertheless, it was enough to take a narrow lead at the break – because Eduardo Gurbindo and Ehrig, who had missed 363 days after a total knee injury, turned the game around again.

THW with a strong finish

Although the home team quickly took the lead again with two goals after the break, the game remained the same as before the break. Instead of taking a calming lead, THW allowed Szeged to come closer again and again. Nikolas Bilyk made two missed throws in a row (35th and 36th) when the score was 19:18. Only Patrick Wiencek managed to make it 21:18 (38th), something the Kiel team had previously despaired of.

But Szeged didn’t let up. Mario Sostaric brought the guests within one goal again (24:25/47th). But the THW had the better finish – and now also punished the opponent’s mistakes. Reinkind put his team in front for the first time with four goals after a crash into the crossbar by Austrian Sebastian Frimmel on the other side (29:25/52.). And at the latest after Niclas Ekberg scored 32:26 (54′), who also scored reliably from seven (53′), the game was actually decided.

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NDR 2 Sport | Sep 21, 2023 | 11:03 p.m


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