EL: All set for Final four

Two Romanian teams and a representative from France and Norway respectively are still in contention of the European League title. Dunarea Braila, Gloria 2018 BN, Neptunes de Nantes and Storhamar all advanced to the prestigious Final four event. 

Nantes won the premier tournament after the structure change 2020/21. Helle Thomsen´s team is back with high hopes and fierce attacks, as shown at Sola HK´s expense in the quarter-finals. Sola trailed four behind after the first game and the slim hope was reduced even further with competent saves from Floriane Andre and a lot of counter-attack opportunities.

Sola went into desperation mode in the second half, but Nantes found the empty net time after time. All in all, 39 and Nantes will have to accept some favorite pressure before the medal games start.

Storhamar copied Nantes recipe and ran away from Thüringer HC. Anniken Obaidli (nine goals) created many openings from her centre back position and Tina Abdula was in good shape over both weekends in the last eight duel. THC had a shining star in Jennifer Rode during the away game, still the opposition proved to hard for the fourth placed team of last year.

Dunarea Brăila will also travel to the final arena in Graz, Austria. Even so, the Romanian challenger take part in the final four for the first time in club history. Dunarea Braila fought off Podravka Vegeta, whose chance was very much ruined already last week. The supporters made sure Dunarea Braila had a winning feeling despite some setbacks until 26–25.

– We really enjoy the history we made today. We know that this is a big thing for Braila and we really tried to enjoy every second of the game, said Kristina Liscevic according to eurohandball.com.

Gloria 2018 BN joined the Romanian colleague with an unprecedented outcome. 27–25 against Motherson Mosonmagyarovari doubled the margin in a rather tight match-up. The Hungarian guests leveled the standing in the beginning  of the second half and even had a total lead just before minute 50. However, the playmaker Cristina Laslo and her teammates kept cool in a final turn of events.

European League

Sola HK–Neptunes de Nantes 31–39
Nantes advance, 70–57
Storhamar HB–Thüringer HC 33–26
Storhamar advance, 72–61
Dunarea Brăila–Podravka Vegeta 26–25 
Dunarea Brăila advance, 58–51
Gloria 2018 BN–Motherson Mosonmagyarovari 27–25
Gloria advance, 59–55