Day 12, Group A – Waspo 98 Hannover (GER) v Zodiac CNA Barceloneta (ESP) 7-16
Back on Day 3, Hannover went through the first real embarrassment of the season as their newly shaped young side were thrashed by the Spaniards. Based on the previous years, such a weak resistance was surprising from Waspo but it turned out that this transition period might bring some unusually tough moments, like a 7-1 opening period and a 20-5 loss.
Nine rounds later something changed, though the difference between the teams were mirrored by their ranks – the leader met the bottom ranked side – and in the game too. At least Hannover held on in the first half, a definite improvement compared to the game in Barceloneta, though it started the same way as the Spaniards rushed to a 0-3 lead in four minutes. Now the hosts pulled two back from man-ups and trailed 2-4 after the opening eight minutes. They kept on going in the second, Barceloneta needed some good defending in man-downs to keep at least the two-goal gap till halftime.
Then in the third they geared up and galloped away with the win. It was a blast, not a run – after two minutes of battling the Spaniards turned themselves into a scoring machine and netted five goals in 3:02 minutes. Added a sixth one 35 seconds before the last break to lead 4-12, Aleksandar Radovic managed to score a bit sooner, to avoid a bad-looking 0-6 as a partial result but the game was over. The fourth was a bit more balanced but the Spaniards still netted four more and recorded a compulsory victory to keep their three-point lead and now they need one more win to secure the top spot. On contrary, Hannover is yet to win a home game in this season – though last season they earned most of the points in their pool which sent them to the F8…
How they saw it
Karsten Seehafer, coach, Hannover
“It was an expected result. The first half was very good from our side, if we don’t miss some chances in man-up we could have reached more in this period. Then came a very bad third quarter, but again, it was not that surprising as we played against Barceloneta. Everyone could see that game by game we play a bit better, our focus is on the Germans finals in three weeks.”
Elvis Fatovic, coach, Barceloneta
“We knew before the match that we are the stronger team, still, we lost our focus a bit in defence in the second period. Once we reset ourselves in defence, we controlled the match again. Though let me add that Hannover played much better this time than in our first game.”