Odense snatch crucial win against Brest
On Sunday afternoon in Denmark, Odense Håndbold produced a superb comeback in the dying minutes of the first leg of the EHF Champions League Women play-offs to take an impressive win, 25:24, against Brest Bretagne Handball.
PLAY-OFF, FIRST LEG
Odense Håndbold (DEN) vs Brest Bretagne Handball (FRA) 25:24 (13:12)
- inspired by four goals from back Helene Fauske, Brest embarked on a 6:2 run to start the second half, which looked to be the turning point of the match
- but Odense turned the game around with a 4:1 run, capitalised by a strong finish, with two penalties converted by line player Maren Nyland Aardahl
- Odense relied on their depth, with right back Dione Housheer, their top scorer this season, inspiring her side with five goals
- Brest's superb pair of goalkeepers – Sandra Toft (three saves) and Cléopâtre Darleux (four saves) – had an unusually quiet afternoon against Odense
- Brest Bretagne will host the second leg in Brest, France on Sunday 3 April
- the winner of the tie will face Hungarian powerhouse Györi Audi ETO KC in the quarter-finals
Brest look set to defend their home court
Monika Kobylinska's strong shot from 10 metres helped Brest Bretagne minimise the damage against Odense Håndbold, who secured a 25:24 home win in the first leg of the EHF Champions League Women play-offs. Brest led by three goals with less than 13 minutes remaining, but they let the win slip after struggling under pressure in the closing stages.
Their amazing home credentials – six wins from seven games this season in the group phase – will be seriously tested in the second leg. However, the French champions are still favoured to progress to the quarter-finals.
We expected a tough and hard game. I think we won in the defence today. We had some problems in our attack in the second half, but we kept on fighting because we know a game lasts until the end. It is nice that we won by one goal, but we know that next week is going to be tough again.
I think it was a really tough game, and we had some difficulties in the first half in defence. We could not find our speed in the counter attack, and normally this is one of our strengths. It was better in the second half, but Odense also played really good in their defence. The second game will be very exciting.