Bazaliu saves a point for Romania with last-gasp shot
Austria looked like they did just enough to secure the win against Romania after Patricia Kovacs scored with 12 seconds to go, but the undermanned Romanian side tied the game, 33:33 with a strong shot from Bianca Bazaliu just two seconds before the final whistle.
Austria vs Romania 33:33 (11:16)
- Romania cruised to a 16:11 lead at the break after a strong display in the first half, only to concede a 10:4 run against Austria, which took the lead, 21:20
- Romanian-born coach Herbert Muller instilled new life in the Austrian team, which delivered a stellar performance in attack, with 33 goals, with experienced centre back Sonia Frey scoring seven times
- but Romania had Bianca Bazaliu in superb form, as the left back scored 11 goals, to help her side earn a point
- prior to this draw, Austria had never secured a point against Romania, losing all the previous five games in the last 20 years
- Romania will face group leaders Denmark in a doubleheader in March, needing at least one point to cement their status as favourites to qualify
Has Romania found the solution for the left back position?
As Cristina Neagu stated she will not play for the national side in 2021, the Romanian side had to make do without the star left back.
But Bianca Bazaliu, one of the hottest prospects in Romanian handball for several years, took charge in the game against Austria, scoring 11 goals, including the final one, with two seconds to go, helping the Romanian side secure a draw.
The Qualification Phase 2 of the EHF EURO 2022 will be a tough task for Romania, who have missed the final tournament only once, in 2006, after being eliminated in a play-off with Serbia.