Ukrainian joy despite defeat
A draw at the very start of the campaign against Russia proved to make the difference for Ukraine as it earned them the 24th and final ticket to EHF EURO 2022, despite losing to Czech Republic on Sunday.
Russia ended the group on top and unbeaten after fighting off a spirited performance from Faroe Islands.
Czech Republic vs Ukraine 27:22 (14:11)
- the Czechs finished the qualification with seven points and three victories, while Ukraine remained on five points
- after a close reverse fixture (28:26), this win was more comfortable for the hosts
- Czech goalkeeper Martin Galia saved 12 shots, twice as many as the Ukrainian goalkeepers
- the Czechs pulled ahead late in the first half, mainly thanks to Matej Klima (eight goals) and Roman Becvar, who scored more than 50 per cent of the Czech goals
Targeting an improved final tournament
After finishing second in the qualification for EHF EURO 2020, Ukraine were on a high but did not win a single point at the event and finished in 22nd position. Coach Sergej Bebeshko and the Federation went their separate ways. Now Mykola Stepanets has the chance to secure a better result in Hungary and Slovakia.
Faroe Islands vs Russia 23:28 (11:12)
- Faroe Island again showed a strong performance and proved they are about to bridge the gap to Europe's elite
- from 4:4, Russia were constantly ahead but could not increase the gap to more than two goals before the break as the hosts were quite efficient in attack
- just like at the victory against the Czechs, Elias Ellefsen a Skipagotu was the hub of the Faroe attack, not only with 6 goals but also as a playmaker
- when Sergei Kosotorov opened a five-goal lead with nine minutes left, the victory and an unbeaten campaign was assured
- Kosotorov finished as the game's top scorer with eight goals