Sunday, 14 February 2021

Olympic Qualifiers: Croatia Tops Romania in Game One (16:6)

February 14, 2021 - Croatia tops Romania in game one of the Olympic qualifiers in Rotterdam, Netherlands (16:6).

The Croatia water polo team began the qualifying tournament for the Olympic Games on Sunday in Rotterdam, Netherlands, against Romania. 

Of the 12 national teams, only the three first-place teams will secure a spot in Tokyo. Ivica Tucak's side has a hard fight ahead of them, and their first opponent in Group B was Romania. 

Croatia led the first quarter 5:1, the second quarter 3:1, the third quarter 4:2, and the fourth quarter 4:2 to win the first game of the group stage 16:6. 

The most efficient player for Croatia was Rino Burić with three goals, Marko Macan, Loren Fatović, Luka Lončar, Maro Joković, and Lovre Miloš added two goals each, while Tudor-Andrei Fulea and Vlad-Luca Georgescu scored two goals each for Romania.

Croatia is in Group B with Germany, Russia, Romania, the Netherlands, while the national teams of Greece, Montenegro, Brazil, Canada, Georgia, and Turkey play in Group A.

After the opening against Romania, Croatia plays against the Netherlands (Monday, February 15, at 7 pm), France (Tuesday, February 16, at 8:30 pm), Russia (Wednesday, February 17, at 2:30 pm), and Germany (Thursday, February 18, at 8:30 pm.).

In the earlier match on Sunday, the Netherlands defeated Germany with a final score of 11:10.

Following the group stage, the quarterfinal stage will commence on Friday, February 19, in which the four best teams from each group will meet.  The pairs will be determined by their positions in the standings (A1 - B4, A2 - B3, A3 - B2, and A4 - B1). 

The four winning teams will play in the semifinals on February 20. The finalists of the qualifying tournament, as well as the national team that wins the match for third place on February 21, will qualify for the Olympic Games in Tokyo, which are scheduled from July 24 to August 8, 2021. 

To read more about sport in Croatia, follow TCN's dedicated page.

Thursday, 10 December 2020

Croatia Women's Handball Team Writes History with Euros Victory against Romania!

December 10, 2020 - The Croatia women's handball team defeated Romania in the second round of the European Championship on Thursday, bringing them one step closer to the semifinals. 

The Croatia women's handball team began the second round of the European Championship against Romania in Kolding, Denmark on Tuesday after three incredible victories in the group stage against Hungary, the Netherlands, and Serbia.

While Croatia was behind for the first 20 minutes of the match, they equalized at 8:8 in the 21st minute and only went up from there. By the 27th minute, it was 12:9 for Croatia, and the first half ended with them up by 4 (14:10)!

Croatia's momentum continued in the second half, with brilliant saves by Tea Pijevic in goal. It was 15:11 for Croatia in the 34th minute, and 17:12 just three minutes later! In the 41st minute, Croatia still had a 5-goal advantage -  and in the 44th minute, it was 19:15. 

Romania reduced their lead to 19:17 in the 48th minute, forcing Croatia to call a timeout. 

A goal moments later put Croatia back up to +3, and with just over 10 minutes to go, it was crucial for the girls to hold onto this advantage. 

In the 52nd minute, it was 21:17 for Croatia, and in the 54th minute, 22:18. Tea Pijevic was stellar in goal with another save in the 56th minute, and with three minutes to go, it was 23:19 for Croatia. A five-goal advantage for Croatia with two minutes to go nearly sealed their victory, though they remained solid in the defense to avoid a dramatic finish. 

With less than one minute to go, Romania's final attack failed. Croatia scored the final goal of the match for the 25:20 victory! 

With this victory, Croatia writes another beautiful page in handball history, because they have never achieved four consecutive wins at the European Championship. Croatian had never defeated Romania at the European Championships either, and in four games played before this, Romania won each time.

Romania is a national team with an extremely rich tradition and three world champion titles, though it was a long time ago - in 1956, 1960, and 1962. They also have two silver medals from the World Championship. Romania's last medals were won in Denmark - bronze from the European Championship in 2010 (then Norway was also a co-host) and bronze from the World Championship in 2015.

To read more about Croatia handball, follow the official website of the Croatian Handball Federation.

To read more about sport in Croatia, follow TCN's dedicated page.

Monday, 26 February 2018

FIBA World Cup Qualifiers: After Romania Defeat, Skelin Offers New Lineup Against Netherlands

Last weekend in Zadar, the Croatia men’s basketball team suffered a shocking defeat against Romania in the FIBA World Cup qualifiers. Tonight, Ivica Skelin's team welcomes the Netherlands.