Vardar have once again proved to be a great, quality team showing patience and consistency on Wednesday evening in Skopje coming out on top against Motor Zaporozhye 44:37 (20:19).
With what was their sixth win of the season they’ve now climbed all the way to the top of the standings in Group A. Timur Dibirov and Stevan Vujovic took off for their respective teams in this one. Vardar’s flying Russian finished the match with 11 goals from 14 attempts while Motor’s left back netted 12 from only 13 attempts. Motor have arrived heavily shorthanded in Skopje.
However, the match was far from a blowout, especially in the first half in which Motor’s youngsters showed a lot of motivation and talent not allowing Vardar to extend the gap early. Five minutes before the half-time whistle they were even two goals up (15:17) but weren’t able to keep up with Vardar going on a run to close the first half and go to break with a minimum 20:19 lead. Goalkeeper Oleksandr Bilyi was one of the reasons why Motor were able to stay close finishing the match with eight saves. Vardar on the other side rotated all three of their goalies – Ghedbane, Kugis and Kizic with young Kizic proving to be a great potential between posts grabbing a few important saves which Red&Black knew how to take advantage of opening the gap to five (28:23) with about 20 minutes left in the second. After that, Vardar’s defense got better and that meant this one is all over. Bad thing for Vardar is however the fact Christian Dissinger had to leave the court in the second minute of the match due to an injury and did not return.
Vardar’s wingers Dibirov, Shishkarev and Cupic have in this one delivered an absolutely stunning performance combining for 27 goals. Stevan Vujovic on the other side scored 12 for Motor.
Weekend is bringing tough new challenges for both teams in the VELUX EHF Champions League with Motor travelling to France to meet Montpellier and Vardar playing in Kielce. In their next SEHA League appearances Motor will play Nexe in Nasice and Vardar will travel to Novi Sad to play Vojvodina.