The second round of the 2017/18 Euro Cup, held this weekend, saw a lot of exciting matches, but there weren’t big surprises. Favourites remained unbeaten. Title-holder Ferencvaros continued its winning streak and won the first place in the group in Budapest. Sport Management (Italy), last season’s semifinalist, finished atop the group in Aix en Provence. Along with them, another club from Hungary, newcomer Miskolc and Jadran Split (Croatia) advanced to the quarterfinals.
Aix en Provence: Sport Management with no mistake
The opening day in Aix en Provence saw two exciting matches. Miskolc had a nice three-goal lead (11:8) five minutes before the end of the match against Sport Management. But, the Italians bounced back in the last 3:45 minutes with three goals in a row. The thriller was ended by Stefano Luongo who scored an equaliser six seconds to go (11:11).
The second match was very similar to the first. Pays D’Aix, the home team, led against Shturm 2002 (Russia) 11:8 (04:26 on the clock). The Russians scored two goals in the finish, but they weren’t able to do anything more and Pays D’Aix defeated them 11:10.
On Day 2, Sport Management, led by Stefano Luongo (5 goals) and Antonio Petkovic (4), demolished Shturm 2002, beating the Russians 16:5. Pays d’Aix and Miskolc shared the points (13:13). Eleven goals were scored in the fourth period. Miskolc led throughout the almost whole match. They jumped to 13:11 in the last minute (0:46). The hosts managed to equalise with 0:02 seconds to go. But, it wasn’t enough for them to reach the second place, because there weren’t surprises on Day 3.
Pays d’Aix didn’t upset Sport Management in the last round (the Italians won 14:7), while Miskolc, led by the best scorer of the tournament Sasa Misic (5 goals in the match, 12 goals in a total), beat Shturm 2002 (11:9) and secured the spot in the quarterfinals.
Budapest: Outcome in the last second
Ferencvaros water polo players dominated in the tournament on their pool in Budapest. The team from the capital of Hungary is the only one that earned nine wins in so many games in this season (6 in the first round, 3 this weekend), while a battle for the second place was ended in a thriller finish.
Rivals shared the points in the first match in Budapest.The encounter between Jadran (Split) and Mataro ended in an 8:8 draw. In the second match of Day 1, title-holder and host Ferencvaros, led by Denes Varga (5 goals), defeated Primorac 13:10.
Ferencvaros secured the spot in the quarterfinals after the second round. The current title-holder blew away Jadran with a 17:3 victory on Day 2. The Croats their first goal scored in the 6th minute (5:1). Two quarters were scoreless. They didn’t score until the start of the last period (13:2). Man of the match Nikola Jaksic. The young Serb, Olympic champion, who came from Partizan five months ago, netted six goals.
In the other encounter of the day, Mataro water polo players had to fight hard against Primorac in the last seconds, despite they had a three-goal lead in the third period (5:2, 6:3 and 7:4). The Montenegrins equalised in the 28th minute (7:7). The Spaniards went 9:7 up (01:30 on the clock). Primorac pulled one back, but Mataro won 9:8.
Ferencvaros didn’t have a mercy in the last round, too. The Hungarian club enjoyed an easy cruise in the encounter with Mataro. Title-holder defeated the Spaniards 11:4. Krisztian Manhercz was the top scorer, with four goals.
The final outcome of the close battle for the second place came in the last second of the tournament! Jadran Split beat Primorac very convincingly – 17:9 in the last match of the weekend. The Croats their 17th goal scored a second before the last buzzer (Viskovic). They caught up the Spaniards in points, so the goal-difference decided the second place in the group because Mataro and Jadran tied their clash. The teams earned four points each and both finished with a – 6 goal difference. Jadran water polo players went through because they scored more goals than Mataro in the tournament. Jadran’s goal difference was 28:34, while Mataro had 21:27.
In the quarter-finals, the four advancing teams will be paired with the four losing teams of the Champions League Qualification Round 3.
2017/18 Euro Cup, 2nd round
Group C (Aix en Provence)
Miskolci VLC 11:11 Sport Management
(5:4, 3:0, 1:3, 2:4)
Miskolci: Bowen 4, Misic 2, Halek 2, Kuzmenko, Vadovics, Milicic.
Sport Management: Mirarchi 3, S. Luongo 3, Figlioli, Petkovic, Drasovic, Baraldi, Valentino.
Pays D’Aix 11:10 Shturm 2002
(4:2, 2:2, 1:3, 4:3, 2:2)
Pays D’Aix: Vukicevic 3, Shiga 2, Crousillat 2, De Lera 2, Saux, Khasz.
Shturm 2002: Vasilyev 2, Kuzmenkov 2, SUckhov 2, Kharkov 2, Nezhinskii, Usov.
Sport Management 16:5 Shturm 2002
(4:0, 6:1, 4:2, 2:2)
Sport Management: S. Luongo 5, Petkovic 4, Gallo 3, Mirarchi 2, Figlioli, Di Somma.
Shturm 2002: Emelianov 2, Nezhinskii, Pronin, Kharkov.
Pays D’Aix 13:13 Miskolci VLC
(2:2, 1:3, 3:4, 7:4)
Pays D’Aix Natation: Vukicevic 4, De Lera 4, Crousillat 2, Khasz 2, Shiga.
Miskolci VLC: Misic 5, Berta 3, Bowen 3, Nagy, Milicic.
Sturm 2002 9:11 Miskolci
(1:2, 1:3, 3:3, 4:3)
Sturm 2002: Kharkov 3, Usov 2, Pronin 2, Emelianov, Nezhinskii.
Miskolci VLC: Misic 5, Berta 3, Bowen, Santa, Halek.
Pays d’aix 7:14 Sport Management
(1:2, 2:6, 2:4, 2:2)
Pays d’Aix: Crousillat 4, Shiga, Vukicevic, De Lera.
Sport Management: Petkovic 3, Figlioli 3, S. Luongo 2, Fondelli 2, Drasovic, Blary, Mirarchi, Baraldi.
1.Sport Management (Italy)* 3 matches – 7 points
2. Miskolci VLC (Hungary)* 3 – 5
3. Pays d’Aix Natation (France) 3 – 4
4. Shturm 2002 (Russia) 3 – 0
Group D (Budapest)
Jadran (S) 8:8 Mataro
(4:1, 1:2, 2:2, 1:3)
Jadran: Krapic 3, Antonijevic 2, Pejkovic, Viskovic,Milradovic.
Mataro: Veich 2, Minguez Simmaro 2, Ruiz Gonzaez, Codina Pica, Barbena Triola, Yanez Dominguez.
Ferencvaros 13:10 Primorac
(6:4, 4:2, 3:1, 0:3)
Ferencvaros: De. Varga 5, Jaksic 3, Nikic 2,Vamos, Sziranyi, Da. Varga.
Primorac: Gluhaic 3, A. Petrovic 2, Gopcevic 2, Grgurevic 2, Vukasovic.
Mataro 9:8 Primorac
(3:1, 1:1, 3:3,2:3)
Mataro: Yanez Dominguez 4, Corrbalan Cruz 3, Merino Esperalba, Puig Ruiz.
Primorac: Gopcevic 3, Latinovic 2, Matkovic, A. Petrovic, Vukmirovic.
Ferencvaros 17:3 Jadran (S)
(6:1, 3:0, 3:0, 5:2)
Ferencvaros: Jaksic 6, Nemet 3, Sedlmayer 2, De. Varga 2, Mitrovic 2, Nikic, Jansik.
Jadran: Pejkovic 2, Krapic.
Ferencvaros 11:4 Mataro
(4:0, 3:1, 2:1, 2:2)
Ferencvaros: Vamos 4, Manhercz 2, Jaksic 2, Nikic, Jansik, Mitrovic.
Mataro: Merino Esperalba, Veich, Puig Ruiz, Corbalan Cruz.
Primorac 9:17 Jadran (S)
(2:4, 1:4, 3:4, 3:5)
Primorac: Gluhaic 3, Matkovic 2, Gopcevic, Vukmirovic, Grgurevic, Paunovic.
Jadran: Butic 4, Marinic-Kragic 3, Antonijevic 3, Krapic 2, Viskovic 2, Buzdovanovic 2, Power.
1.Ferencvaros (Hungary)* 3 – 9
2. Jadran Split (Croatia)* 3 – 4
3. CN Mataro (Spain) 3 – 4
4. Primorac Kotor (Montenegro) 3 – 0
*Advanced to the quarterfinals