Croatia began Men’s EHF EURO 2016 with a win over „old rival“ Belarus 27:21 (15:15) n the opening match in Katowice. Croatian stars made nervous their fans after bad first half in which Siarhei Rutenka showed something of his class by scoring seven of his eight goals.
Belarussians were on 8:5 after 12 minutes, 13:11 five minutes before the half-time break, but Croatian defense managed to stop their rivals in order to leave the court undefeated.
Even without Domagoj Duvnjak (0/2), Croats managed to take the game in their own hands from the first moment of the second half. Back-line Slišković – Karačić –Kopljar (after his injury Šebetić took his place). Ivan Stevanović saved some important shots, when Ivan Čupić scored for +5 – 26:21 in 52nd minute.
Nobody thought that Belarus won’t score until the end (last ten minutes)….
Manuel Štrlek was TOP scorer for the winners with nine goals.