Astralpool Sabadell (ESP) v Spandau 04 Berlin (GER) 9-9
The ’real’ Spandau returned to the pool, not the team we had seen two weeks ago when players came to play a game against Novi Beograd practically from their beds once the quarantine was lifted after the Covid-infections.
How they started the game was a clear sign of this: they stormed to a 0-3 lead with two fine action goals and a man-up hit. Turning into the last minute they still held on for 1-4, though Sabadell pulled one back as Bernat Sanahuja put away a 6 on 5 with 35 seconds to go.
Trends began to change in the second. After a killed man-down, Sergi Cabanas netted one from 6m after 70 seconds, then the defences took over the reign, and the goals dried up. Two man-ups were killed at both ends so it stood 3-4 at halftime. The Spanish defence worked extremely well, they could shut out their rivals for four more minutes while netting two man-up goals in front to stage a 4-0 run and took the lead for the first time at 5-4.
The Germans’ miseries in offence were halted after 12:57 minutes, Denis Strelezkij hit one from a man-up, and soon Andrei Prioteasa delivered another one from action for 5-6. Valera replied immediately from the perimeter and Sabadell could have had more, but Laszlo Baksa came up with huge saves, first in a 6 on 4, then in a single man-down.
Still, Sabadell could take the lead twice in the last period, but the Germans could equalise on both occasions, what’s more, Marek Tkac gave them the lead at 8-9, thanks to a lucky bounce, with 2:36 to go. Sabadell missed a man-up, then Spandau could have won the game but their extra gone as well, despite they played it after a time-out. With 1:18 to go, the hosts also earned a 6 on 5 and they made it, their Montenegrin shooter Kanstantin Averka sent the ball home from the perimeter. The teams had 63 seconds to score the winner, but neither side could set up a good scoring chance, so they had to settle for a draw.
How they saw it
Quim Colet, coach, Sabadell
“I’m very happy with this result. Don’t forget that we have a very young team so making mistakes is normal in our case. I think we played a good game and the draw is a rightful result.”
Athanasios Kechagias, coach, Spandau
“I think I can congratulate for both teams. It was a great game and the most important is that we could finish this game with a positive result and the thoughts of how we can get better.”