Spandau 04 Berlin (GER) v Novi Beograd (SRB) 5-16
Based on the line-ups, the individual qualities of the respective players, Spandau has never been the favourite to win this match against last year’s runners-up (who just had more great additions in the summer). But Covid, even if we try to think it will not have major impact on the sporting world anymore, can still ruin some parties. Spandau players produced multiple positive tests last week and for days it looked like the game would be forfeited and awarded with a 0-10 technical score to NBG (last season three matches ended the same way).
However, at the beginning of this week an agreement was reached that Spandau would try to line up a team to save the game – and on Wednesday the Germans could field a full 13-player team. Most of their aces were back, though the general shape of their side was far from ideal.
Still, despite falling 0-2 back in the first period, Spandau produced a more than promising spell in the second, they came back to 3-3 before Novi Beograd’s new acquisition Alvaro Granados netted an action goal and soon before halftime Strahinja Rasovic hit two in 32 seconds for a calming 3-6 lead.
For the second half, the Spandau players gradually ran out of gas. Quite understandably, they were unable to match the speed and the power of the Serbs who hit six in the third to decide the outcome. It was just slightly better from the Germans’ angle in the fourth – at the end of the day, the partial scores of the two halves tell the story: a 3-6 run was followed by a 2-10 hammering.