Already in 1/8 finals
Dinamo Minsk handballers achieve fifth victory at Champions League Group Stage
By Igor Leshin
In the 8th tournament game in Group D, the Minskers defeated Croatian Zagreb in an away match — 23:25 (14:10). The latter team includes six bronze prize winners from the recent World Championship in Spain, but failed to live up to their promise before the crowd of 9,000.
Dinamo, which has already ensured a ticket into the 1/8 finals, saw Pavel Atman score six goals, as did Sergey Onufrienko; Denis Rutenko scored five, Dmitry Nikulenkov four, Maxim Babichev three and Ivan Brovko one.
In the first round of the competition, Sergey Bebeshko’s squad welcomed the Croatians to Minsk’s Sports Palace in October 2012. The result was a 27 all draw. Moreover, the Belarusian squad defeated Swiss Schaffhausen — 33:23 (at home) and 33:28 (away), Hungarian Puck — 29:24 (at home) and German Berlin — 31:41 (at home). The team also suffered two defeats: from Berlin — 25:29 and Spanish Barcelona — 24:25.
Dinamo Minsk handballers have two games still to play: Puck in an away match on February 16th and Barcelona at home on February 21st. The leader of the Belarusian national team, Sergey Rutenko, is to play against Belarus with a team comprising many players from the national squad of Spain, which recently won the World Championship.
At present, the tournament standings in Group D are as follows: Barcelona — 14 points across seven matches, Dinamo — 11 points in 8 matches, Berlin — 10 points from seven games, Schaffhausen 4 points in eight matches, Puck — 4 points across eight matches and Croatian Zagreb — 3 points from eight games.
The four best teams from each of four preliminary groups will enter the Champions League play-offs.