20210302 Wisla Medvedi 15
EHF European League

Chekhov finish third despite winning in Plock

EHF / Kevin Domas

If Plock secured the first spot in the group two rounds ago, the Polish side still had to host Chekhov tonight. After suffering their first defeat last week in Leon, Plock were looking to reassure themselves with a last win tonight.

But visitors Chekhov still had something at stake in this game. Ranked third before throw-off, the Russian side could hope to snatch second place from Leon. But the first condition was to win tonight in Plock.

GROUP A

Orlen Wisla Plock (POL) vs Chekhovskie Medvedie (RUS) 25:27 (13:16)

• Chekhov had the upper hand all throughout the first half. A quick two-goals advantage, a three-goals one at the break, numbers do not lie, as Dmitriy Kiselev scored five to put his team ahead at half-time (16:13).
• Goalkeeper Adam Moravski did wonders for Plock when he came on the court, helping his team turn the situation around and even, briefly, lead on the scoreboard. But Chekhov finally regained the momentum in the last seconds to get the two points.
• Despite being level with Leon at the second place of the group, Chekhov stand behind the Spanish side after losing twice in direct confrontations.
• Plock end the group phase with two losses, which do not prevent the Polish side to finish on top of group A.

Artjom Grushko, big in saves, not big in numbers

Four saves, 25% efficiency, Artjom Grushko probably delivered better stats in his career than he did tonight in Plock. But the Chekhov goalkeeper blocked the last two Plock shots, including a fastbreak by Lovro Mihic, to help his team secure the win in Poland. Although this one might have been a desperate one to reach the second spot, the Russian side will go to the Last 16 knowing they have decisive goalkeepers backing them up.

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