15.01.2014, Group D, Copenhagen
Croatia 27:22 Montenegro (13:12)
In the Balkans duel, Croatia had the quality on their side, even though their game was not on their usual level. Croatia won and will advance in the Main Round.
It took 15 minutes to break Montenegrin resistance, with a goal from Musa, Croatia made three goals lead 8-5 which was the highest advantage in the first half. But highly motivated Montenegrin team did not surrender, they managed to get to one goal difference, which was not enough for any surprise. The first half ended (13-12).
Mirko Alilovic was brilliant on his goal, with his help and some mistakes from his opponents, Croatia in 39th minute with a score from Gojun made the highest 5 goals difference 19-14. Montenegro had only one player in the mood – Ševaljević. While Alilović read all the other shots, he could not read his, so the player of Hannover scored nine goals from 12 shots. That was not enough to level with the strong team of Croatia, even when they have had a weak day.
Belarus 27:22 Sweden (10:13)
Sweden in front of their supporters took the second victory in a match against Belarus in Group D and advanced to the Main Round. Siarhei Rutenka recovered from fever for this match and scored impressive 13 goals for his team which was not enough.
Sweden had the initial momentum and took the lead by two goals margin, but Belarus was not ready to surrender. Siarhei Rutenka in 16th minute took Belarus in lead with 6-5. That was the only lead for the Belarusians on this match. From that point on, Sweden took the control over the game and with a goal, five second before the end of the first half made three goals advantage 13-10.
The second half started as the first, again the first 15 minutes belonged to Belarus, they managed to come close to only one goal difference 15-16. But Sweden with the goals from Peterssen, Nilsson and Fahlgren made 4-0 series for 15-20, in 15th minute. That was the breaking point in this match, Belarus gave up, Rutenka was the last man standing in the resistance. Scandinavians utilized that and with three goals from Nilsson took Sweden to 8 goals difference and routinely finished the game. The great Swedish line player, Nilsson was the best player in his team, scoring 7 goals out of 7 attempts.