Euro Handball Poland 2014

GROUP I1: Unsuccessful pursuit for FYR Macedonia, 1st place for Iceland

National team of Iceland has defeated FYR Macedonia in Wednesday’s first game in Gdansk. After thrilling end of the game Icelanders won 26:25 (14:10).

MATCH REVIEW:

After Tuesday’s victory over Serbia, the duel between FYR Macedonia and Iceland was said to be extremely interesting. Before the game both teams hadn’t been certain of place in the World Championship, so everything was dependent on the result of their direct clash.

From the very beginning Icelanders were the better side, quickly building a solid lead. Goalkeeper Gretar Ari Gudjonsson was in a great form, making few saves with long-range shots. On the other side of the court Egill Magnusson  was unstoppable, what made Iceland winning 10:4 after 16 minutes.

Macedonians, however, have reduced rivlas lead just before the half time to four goals, but soon after the break Icelanders quickly increased the score with thier fast-breaks. After two goals from Hakon Styrmisson it was 18:11 (37 minutes).

In the final minutes of the game Macedonians rushed into a frantic pursuit for rivals. Several saves from goalkeeper Nikola Kizikj and brilliant efficiency of Filip Taleski and Marko Nelovski gave them hope, but coach Aleksandar Jovikj’s team didn’t manage to make the score equal. Iceland won 26:25 with goal from Egill Magnusson to be decisive one.

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POST-MATCH QUOTES:

Nikola Matlieski, FYR Macedonia, coach: Congratulations to Iceland. In the first half they were the better team, in the second half we were better., but in ten minutes we can’t win the game. If we want to achieve anything at this championship, we must play in better tempo during sixty minutes.

Marko Stavridis, FYR Macedonia, player: Congratulations to Iceland and the way they play. During the whole game we were out of focus, we couldn’t get our minds straight. We started to think in last ten minutes and then could have big come back, but didn’t manage to.

Einar Gudmundsson, Iceland, coach: Our defence was excellent in the first half, we controlled the whole game. In the second half we could loose, but we allow all players play to have many minutes. The score and our win was never in danger.

Hakon Styrmisson, Iceland, player: We played really good in the first half, but in the second half we nearly have lost. We have lost our heads and then missed so manhy shots. Luckily we won.

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FYR MACEDONIA – ICELAND 25:26 (10:14)

FYR Macedonia: Danilovski, Kizikj, Blazhevski – Boshkovski, Grozdanovski, Velkovski 4, Nelovski 10, Popovski, Onchev 2, Stavridis, Markudov, Taleski 6, Davitkovski, Krstanovski, Krstevski, Palevski 3.
MVP: Nikola Kizikj.
7 metres:
5/5.
Suspensions: 
2×2 min. (Markudov).

Iceland: Gudjonsson, Baldvinsson – Runarson 1, Kristjansson, Hl. Bjarnason, A. F. Arnarsson 1, S. Magnusson 1, Styrmisson 3, D. Arnarsson, Hardarson 1, E. Magnusson 6, Benediktsson 2, He. Bjarnason 2, O. Magnusson 5, Rikhardsson 1, Palsson 3.
MVP: Hakon Styrmisson.
7 metres:
3/4.
Suspensions: 
5×2 min. (Kristjansson, A. E. Arnarsson, E. Magnusson, Benediktsson, Rikhardsson).

Referee: Tomislav Cindric and Robert Gonzurek (Croatia).
Supervisor: Viktor Konopliastyi (Ukraine).
Observer: Jean Yves Renon (France).

GROUP I1 TABLE

P
M
W
D
L
G
+/-
Pts
1  isl Iceland 3 3 0 0 95:85 +10 6
2  mkd FYR Macedonia 3 1 0 2 78:77 +1 2
3  Rosja Russia 2 1 0 1 67:70 -3 2
4  srb Serbia 2 0 0 2 44:52 -8 0