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Croatia opens Handball EURO with victory over Montenegro

(Photo: HRS)

GRAZ, 9 January 2020 – Croatia has opened their 2020 European Men’s Handball Championship campaign with a victory over Montenegro in Graz, Austria on Thursday night.

Outstanding performances from man of the match Domagoj Duvnjak, Luka Cindric, Zlatko Horvat and Marin Sego in goal has helped Croatia to an important win at Stadthalle stadium. 

With a large Croatian contingent in the crowd, Lino Cevar’s side started slow but when they finally got on the board they would race out to an early two-goal lead. 

Montenegro fought back as Croatia began to lose concentration in defence and they would lead at the halftime break 13-12. 

The halftime team-talk by Cevar seemed to work as the second half would be one-way traffic. Croatia turned around the lead thanks to some great defence led by captain Duvnjak, and they would go on a goal streak which would see them lead by 7 goals with five minutes left on the clock. 

Goals to David Mandic, Marino Maric and Luka Cindric saw Croatia comfortably win in the end by 27-21.

The 24-team European Men’s Handball Championship opened tonight and will end on 26 January 2020. The tournament is being co-hosted for the first time in three countries, Austria, Norway and Sweden.

Croatia are in Group A alongside Belarus, Montenegro and Serbia and will play all their group matches in Graz. Belarun beat Serbia by 35-30 in their opening match. The top two teams in each group will qualify for the Main Round which will determine the semi-finalists.  

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