Slovenia cruise to easy away victory
After a close and thrilling 29:28 win on home ground on Thursday, Slovenia had no problems taking their second - even clearer - 27:20 victory against North Macedonia in the reverse fixture in Skopje on Sunday. While Slovenia are on four points, now equal in the ranking with Montenegro, the Macedonians remain on zero points in the first edition of the EHF EURO Cup. After winning all four matches against Montenegro and Slovenia, Norway are already confirmed winners of this competition prior to the last two rounds in April.
EHF EURO CUP:
North Macedonia vs Slovenia 20:27 (11:13)
- like the full first match, the first half was more or less on an equal level until 11:11 - before a double strike of Ana Gros and Tija Gomilar Zickero provided the visitors with a 13:11 halftime lead
- allowing North Macedonia only three goals in the first 15 minutes after the break, Slovenia easily and decisively pulled ahead to 22:14
- Slovenian goalkeeper Amra Pandzic played a crucial role in that period and had 11 saves after 60 minutes
- eight times in the second half, including the final result, the gap was seven goals, though Slovenia had started to rotate their top players
- after ten goals in the first match against North Macedonia, again Ana Gros was Slovenia’s top scorer with seven tallies - the same number as Macedonian top star Sara Ristovska
Slovenia prepare for a Top 8 position
Co-hosting the EHF EURO 2022 alongside with Montenegro and North Macedonia should provide Slovenia with the best-ever result at the European Championships. So far, their ninth position in 2004 is their only Top 10 ranking so far. Since then, the Slovenian side have not even qualified for any main round at EHF EURO events - in 2020, they even finished 16th and last after three defeats in the preliminary stage. With players such as Ana Gros or Tjasa Stanko steered by experienced Dragan Adzic and boosted by their fans in Ljubljana, Slovenia hope for at least a Top 8 position.