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ROMANIA: THE CHAMPION TO BE DECIDED IN THE LAST MATCH!

CSM BUCHAREST – DINAMO BUCHAREST 27-25 (13-11)

The second leg of the Romanian League’s Finals was nothing short of moments from a Hollywood drama. Both teams went back and forth on the scoreboard: there was plenty of beautiful goals, spectacular fastbreaks and fantastic saves by the goalkeepers. In the end, it was CSM, with a stronger overall performance, who managed to have the upper hand and tied the score at 1-1.

After the smashing victory in the first game (34-20), DINAMO started the game as favorites, but this time they faced a much stronger and determined opponent, as CSM had the power to put the humiliation behind and proved they can still play some great handball.

This time, the Red Bulldogs of DINAMO could not come even close to the outstanding performance they had in the first match. Their defense was weaker and in many moments unfocused, while the 9 meters line could not repeat the perfect team work they had on game one and, instead, they preferred individual solutions which had little success. The pressure of being so close to a new championship title seemed too big for some players who could not find their pace, took bad decisions in key moments or rushed to shoot at the wrong time.

On the other hand, the Blue Tigers of CSM looked motivated, their defense was focused and much stronger, while in attack their combinations gave many clear opportunities for the 9 meters line. Both of their goalkeepers had a great day, pulling out the magic hat some miraculous saves, including blocking no less than three 7 meters shots in the second half!

For the record, it must also be said that “Lady Luck” had also a strong word in the final outcome of this game, as DINAMO hit the post no less than 6 times, while for CSM many deflected or semi-blocked shots found their way into the back of the net with a lot of chance. In the split seconds of crunching time the luck was always on CSM’s side…but it was part of the show!

Overall, it was more DINAMO who lost the game than it was CSM who won it! The Red Bulldogs looked in control at the start and had the scoreboard advantage until the 25th minute. But then, with some bad decisions in attack and some mistakes in defense, they lost in just a few minutes everything they worked so hard for and it was the Blue Tigers who finished the first half with the upper hand: 13-11 for CSM!

The second half was a battle of the nerves. Still, CSM was more focused, stayed very strong in defense and took the best decisions at the right moments. DINAMO showed more fighting spirit, got some steals in defense and managed to level the game in the 35th minute: 16-16.  The Red Bulldogs even took the advantage after scoring three consecutive fastbreak goals: 17-18 in the 41st minute and, for a little while, it seemed that it was going to be a title awarding ceremony after the second game.

But CSM had a different idea and the last 18 minutes were really dramatic. The Blue Tigers did not give up, came ahead on the board and always stayed one goal in advantage. The two teams went head to head until the 52nd minute when CSM had a steal, went on a fastbreak and scored: 25-23. It was the decisive moment of the game. The time was running out for DINAMO and the pressure made them commit too many mistakes on both ends of the court. When The Red Bulldogs missed a 7 meters shot in the 57th minute it was clear for everybody that it was not their lucky day. The match ended 27-25 for CSM who managed to push the finals into a decisive match.

The thriller goes on and the last game of these spectacular finals will be Monday, 30th  May on DINAMO’s home court.

Score evolution: 2-4 7th minute; 6-8 15th min; 9-9 20th min; 9-11 25th minute; 13-11 half time; 16-14 35th min; 19-19 44th min; 23-22 50th min; 26-24 55th min; final: 27-25.

 

CSM BUCHAREST:

IANCU 6 saves (3 from 7 meters shots), BLAZEVIC 9 saves – MILOSEVIC 7, SIMOVIC, MILITARU, MOJSOVSKI, STAVROSITU, CONSTANTINESCU, RAPCIUGA, HUMET 6, KOSTADINOVIC 3, MARJANAC 3, NEGRU 7, ROTARU, UNGUREANU, STAMATE 1.

7 Meters: 6/5 – all 5 scored by NEGRU. Missed 1: NEGRU.

2 Minutes suspensions: 3; HUMET – 2’, MARJANAC 2’, STAMATE 2’.

 

DINAMO BUCHAREST:

IRIMUS 14 saves, GRIGORAS 1 save, MAKARIA 1 save (7m shot)  – RAPCIUGA, RAGOT 1, DIAW 2, ASOLTANEI 6, MIRONESCU, SAVENCO 2, BĂLUȚ, SANDRU 2, CAMPAN 2, VANCEA, ZULFIC 3, VRANKOVIC 6, MOUSAVI 1.

7 Meters: 6/3 – all by ZULFIC. Missed 3: ZULFIC 2 and  ASOLTANEI 1.

2 Minutes suspensions: 2; SANDRU 2’, CAMPAN 2’.

CATALIN NEGREANU

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