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Denmark in the semi final

Monday’s last match saw hosts Denmark against Hungary in front of jam-packed audience. Danish coach Ulrik Wilbek was confident before the match. He said ‘Hungary are a good team but they won’t have a real chance of winning’, while Hungary’s coach Mocsai  thought his team’s physical condition had reached a stalemate.

Shy Hungary had no answer for fast and effective Danish attacks in the first minutes of the match  (4-1). By the 10th minute however they managed to get back into the match (5-4). Hungary’s wall was working well, goalkeeper Tatai produced some great saves and Ancsin slowly made everyone forget about László Nagy’s absence. His third goal meant that Hungary were one goal up (6-7)! Neither teams were able to obtain significant lead after 20 minutes (10-10). Hungarians succeeded in stopping Mikkel Hansen, who only scored twice yet by the end of the first half the Danes quickly widened the gap thanks to incredible Landin and Christiansen and effictive pivot play. Hungary’s defense seemed to work more or less well but they also should have been more accurate in attack.

The second half started better for the hosts and it seemed the fate of the match would quickly be decided thanks to Mikkel Hansen who rapidly scored several times (18-13). They held on to their lead until the middle of the second half (23-18). Both coaches substituted frequently as they tried to preserve their players for the last matches of the EC. The final minutes brought moderate pace, a few minutes before the end Hungary came within 3 goals but Iváncsik missed the penalty while the Danes scored twice and won the match by four goals (28-24).

Group winners Denmark can now start preparing for a match of no stakes against Iceland, while Hungary meet Austria on Wednesday.

Denmark-Hungary 28-24 (14-11)

Best scorers: Mogensen, Mikkel Hansen (5) / Iváncsik (6), Ancsin (4)

Text: Gábor Várkonyi, Péter Butty

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