Entertaining weekend with 507 goals
The opening phase of the Euro League hasn’t brought any huge upset, teams usually making the big stage all went through with ease including all three Hungarian and Italian participants respectively. The weekend offered fine entertainment for the fans: 507 goals were scored, 21.1 goals per game.
No upset in the opening round, all favourites reached the next phase. The four group winners – Ugra (RUS), Dunaujvaros (HUN), UVSE (HUN), Padova (ITA) – cleared this hurdle with three out of three victories respectively. Group A and C saw the most thrilling matches for the top spot, Ugra beat Sant Andreu (ESP) 9-8 in an extremely tight battle while LEN Trophy winner UVSE overcame Uralochka (RUS) in a brilliant battle. A single-goal last period decided the match, favouring the Hungarians (10-9).
Based on the respective nations’ merits at international stage, Lille’s (FRA) win over Glyfada (GRE) can be labelled as a surprise – the French began their match with a 4-0 rush and never looked back (12-7) and made the best 16 again after last season.
One goal decided on the qualification in Group D where BVSC (HUN) played a thrilling match against Leiden (NED) for the third place. It was a game of twists and turns, the Dutch led 7-8 early in the fourth but the Hungarians responded with three connecting goals. Though Leiden pulled once back (10-9), they couldn’t score any more in the remaining two minutes and missed the cut.
The ladies were at their best in all four venues, the teams netted 507 goals (21.1 goals per game), offering real entertainment. No encounter had less than 17 goals and there was a 30-goal epic too, in Padova Italy’s Orizzonte beat BVSC 17-13.
Euro League, Qualifications
Group A (Messina)
- Ugra Khanty-Mansiysk (RUS) 9, 2. Sant Andreu (ESP) 6, 3. Despar Messina (ITA) 3, 4. SV Nikar Heidelberg (GER) 0
Group B (Dunaujvaros)
- Dunaujvaros (HUN) 9, 2. NC Vouliagmeni (GRE) 6, 3. UC Lille (FRA) 3, 4. ANC Glyfada (GRE) 0
Group C (Utrecht)
- UVSE Budapest (HUN) 9, 2. Dynamo Uralochka (RUS) 6, 3. UZSC Utrecht (NED) 3, 4. Widex GZC Donk (NED) 0
Group D (Padova)
- Plebiscito Padova (ITA) 9, 2. Ekipe Orizzonte (ITA) 6, 3. BVSC-Zuglo (HUN) 3, 4. ZVL Leiden (NED) 0
Top three sides from each group qualified for the preliminary round and will be joined by the Final Four participants from last season: Kirishi (RUS), Olympiacos (GRE), Sabadell (ESP) and Mataro (ESP).
The draw for the preliminary round will be held on 6 December in the LEN Office (Nyon).