Norway outrun Hungary – Semi-Final next
January 23, 2019
MATCH REIVEW – Norway had absolutely no problems booking the ticket to their second semi-final at a World championship, as they met Hungary is their last main round match.
After an even start, Norway were dominating the game, winning by nine goals. The team of coach Christian Berge was simply better as well as faster than their opponents.
By Peter Bruun
Main Round – Group II
Norway vs Hungary 35:26 (16:13)
Before The Match
Norway needed a victory to keep their – slim – semi-final hope alive, but they’d still depend on Denmark defeating Sweden or Sweden winning by less than four goals in the final match of the main round in Group II.
Norway were irresistible, as they out-ran Hungary in their last main round match.
Norway was too fast – throughout the game. The Scandinavians deservedly booked the semi-final ticket against Germany, in Hamburg, on Friday, while putting pressure on Denmark and Sweden ahead of their match.
As Hungary lost by a big margin, their chance to play for seventh place and possibly reaching an Olympic qualification tournament disappeared.
Hungary were able to maintain a one-goal lead until 4:3, before Norway’s pace became too much to handle. Hungary’s defensive runs were too slow to stop the fast breaks of Myrhol & Co. and as a consequence, Norway went ahead 6:4, 8:5, 10:6 and 13:8.
Pushing Mate Lekai forward in a 5-1 defense formation gave Hungary a short break, while Zolt Balogh enjoyed some success with from the right back position before the teams changed sides (16:13).
If the Norwegians were running fast in the first half, it became even more intense after the break and Hungary’s two timeouts in the first 12 minutes of the second half did not help Hungary to interrupt the rhythm of the game.
In the 45th minute, the margin of difference reached double digits for the first time (26:16), before Norway settled for a nine-goal win.
An outstanding performance of Balogh – he reached a total of 11 goals on 15 attempts – did not help Hungary.
What They Said
Alexander Blonz – Norway
“Our plan was to run with the Hungarians. In the first half, we did not succeed as much as we had hoped for and the game was still close.
“In the second half, however, we improved and played much faster and as a result scored eight goals on counter attacks.
“Having scored 35 goals, we can definitely be satisfied with our performance in the attack.
For Norway it meant a couple of hours of anxious waiting, in anticipation of the result in the game between Denmark and Sweden. As Denmark defeated Sweden (30:26), Norway will meet the co-hosts of the 2019 World Cup – Germany – in the semi-final, on Friday.
Hungary will aim for the European championship, next year, in Austria, Norway and Sweden, to get a second chance to play for an Olympic ticket, while Egypt secured the match for seventh place as well as access to the Olympic qualifiers, following their 30:23 win, in the African derby against Tunisia.