2021 World Championship: No Quarterfinal for Croatia Women's Handball Team

By 10 December 2021
2021 World Championship: No Quarterfinal for Croatia Women's Handball Team

December 10, 2021 - The Croatia women's handball team lost to Spain 23:27 (9:12) in the decisive match which would only lead them to the quarterfinals with a victory. Croatia will play against Austria on Sunday, though the match carries no weight. 

When the PCR test results arrived an hour and 15 minutes before the game, the Croatia coach received the final confirmation that he had all the players available, except those who have been in isolation due to the coronavirus, including Mićijević, Dežić and Krsnik.

Ana Debelić scored the first goal of the match in the third minute. Croatia took the lead with a goal by Blažević for 3:2, but Carmen Martin equalized to 3:3, and brought the first lead to Spain in the ninth minute from the counter (3:4).

Blažević was accurate for 5:5 from a penalty in the 12th minute, but Spain took a 5:9 lead in the 18th minute. 

Blažević reduced the score to 6:9 from another seven-meter throw in the 20th minute, Fernandez brought Spain to +4 in the 24th minute, and a minute later Debelić scored from the counter for 7:10.

Blažević scored a penalty for 9:11 and Croatia attacked from only one goal behind, but Fernandez brought Spain to 9:12, which was the final result of the first half.

The second half started with a Spain goal for 9:13, and in the 34th minute, Spain was up 10:15. Two goals by Larissa Kalaus followed, and in the 38th minute, Carmen Martin scored from the penalty spot for 12:17 and forced Šoštarić to take a timeout. 

Blažević scored for 14:17 and Croatia came back to 2 goals behind. Carmen Martin brought Spain back to 14:18 and in the 43rd minute, Blažević's shot landed on the crossbar. It was then 15:19 for Spain. 

It was 17:21 in the 46th minute, but in the 47th minute, Spain went up +5 (17:22) and then +6 ( 17:23). Kalaus was excluded in the 54th minute and Campos scored from the penalty spot for 19:25. 

Croatia then lost hope, and in the 55th minute, Gassama scored for 19:26. It was soon 19:27 for Spain. Šoštarić then called a new timeout, after which Croatia scored four goals in a row for the final 23:27. Croatia at least mitigated the defeat but was left without a spot in the quarterfinals.

Valentina Blažević (7) and Ana Debelić (4) were the best for Croatia, and Barbosa (6) led Spain. 

Source: HRT

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