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EHF Champions League

Pick Szeged end Brest’s last hopes in a thriller

EHF / Björn Pazen

Pick Szeged and Meshkov Brest will go their separate ways after a match that was constantly on the edge. While the Hungarian champions can still hope to finish second in the group and skip the play-offs after a close 28:26 home victory, Brest’s last hopes of advancing have come to an end.

Thanks to eight goals from line player Bence Banhidi, Pick are equal with Montpellier on 16 points, two points below Aalborg and one below Kiel. Meshkov remain on four points after their ninth defeat. 

GROUP A: 

Pick Szeged (HUN) vs. HC Meshkov Brest (BLR) 28:26 (16:14) 

  • despite great support from full stands, Pick had big problems at the beginning and were constantly down until 8:9, as their defence was extremely movable 
  • boosted by Bence Banhidi’s goals, who scored three times in the last five minutes, Pick managed to turn the tide and secured a two-goals at the break after a clear improvement 
  • though the hosts pulled ahead to 20:16, Brest didn’t give up, and managed to level the result at 24:24 on 52 minutes after a 4:1 run and crucial goals from their top scorer Stevan Sretenovic (seven strikes in total) 
  • Szeged were under pressure, but left-wing Sebastian Frimmel scored to make the score 28:26 with 80 seconds to go and then goalkeeper Mirko Alilovic saved a shot from Stas Skube in the last minute 
  • Pick will face Elverum and Montpellier in their remaining group matches 
  • Brest miss the play-offs regardless of their remaining results  

Brest dreams come to an end

After an unlucky defeat at Szeged, Meshkov Brest cannot make it to the play-offs, even if they win both remaining matches, at Kiel and against Vardar, and Elverum and Zagreb lose all of their matches.

In this case, all three clubs would be on eight points. As Brest only took three points against Elverum and Zagreb, they would trail Elverum with five points and Zagreb on four. That would mean Elverum would finish this group ranked sixth and proceed to the play-offs. 

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