SEHA – Gazprom League reigning champions Vardar Skopje have this season, as a part of their rejuvenation plan, introduced several younger players. One of them is winger Dimitar Dimitrioski who has arrived from their city rival Metalurg. Despite of his young age, Dimitrioski already has experience of playing on the highest possible level in both SEHA – Gazprom League and EHF Champions League.
Talented 22-year-old is notable for his quickness and explosiveness and has been showcasing his potential ever since he joined ‘Red&Black’ which is why we’ve picked him to be featured in our newest 7M interview.
Transfers from Metalurg to Vardar and vice versa never go under the radar in Macedonia. How did it work out for you? How did your friends react?
My friends were joking but it was all friendly. They understand the situation I’ve found myself in being offered to sign with reigning both European and SEHA champions Vardar. That is simply a great opportunity to learn and improve which is why everyone supported me in this decision actually.
How satisfied are you with everything so far this season?
I’m pleased with the amount of opportunities I’ve had to show what I’m capable of. I believe I’ll be better as the time goes by. Now it is up to me to train hard, give my best every day and use every minute I get in the best way possible.
You've spent more time on the bench this season simply because Timur Dibirov is much more experienced. Did you, however, manage to learn anything from him?
One of my goals, coming to Vardar, was to learn from guys like Dibirov, Shishkarev and Cupic. They are world-class players and I'm trying to learn as much as I can from them because I see that as a way to become a better player.
Are they good teachers and are you a good student?
They are good teachers and I'm really trying to pay as much attention as possible to all the advices they have for me.
You already have both SEHA and Champions League experience. What would you say is the difference between Metalurg and Vardar?
In Metalurg we were a young team fighting in both SEHA and Champions League. Vardar is a bigger club with bigger ambitions and I feel like the two can't be compared. A young team fighting in CL groups C and D can't really be compared to reigning both SEHA and Champions League champions.
You are the leader of the young generation of players in Macedonian handball. Vardar, as well, is going through a rejuvenation period. Do you see yourself spending more time on the court, having to take more responsibility in the near future?
We are all waiting for the opportunity to prove ourselves. I’d say I’m 120% ready for that. I’m doing my best to grow and improve, be better every day.
How did Dimitar fall in love with handball?
I’ve been on the handball court from the day I was born. Both my father and mother used to be handball players so I’ve fallen in love with the game pretty quickly. Not many people know I started as a middle back, I’ve been playing on that position in Metalurg for quite a long time. I loved it but coaches thought I should transfer to left wing and honestly, I like that as well. I maybe like being a playmaker a little more but now that I’m a winger I’m trying to learn from all of my current teammates.
Considering the fact both your father and mother used to play handball, do you talk about anything else at home?
I’d say 80% of all conversations is handball. We’re always discussing preparation, tactics, ways to improve…
Who is a bigger critic – your mother or father?
My dad, no doubt. He used to coach me back when I was playing for Metalurg. It is not easy to have your father as a coach, you have to work twice as hard to prove yourself.
Your mother often comes to watch your games but your father doesn't.
My mother is a sports journalist and she attends games whenever she can. My father rarely comes but if I was in a position to play against him, I'd do everything I can to beat him.
Do you have anyone you look up to, any idols in handball?
I have a few, my goal is to steal the best from everyone who is playing on my position and currently I’m learning the most from Dibirov, Shishkarev and Cupic.