Asian champions Qatar yesterday staged a fierce comeback to overturn a one-goal deficit in the first period to defeat Bahrain 28-23 in their IHF Handball World Championship Main Round – Group II match.
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Qatari star Rafael Capote and Bahrain’s Mohamed Ahmed both managed to score five goals each in the first 30 minutes.
Qatar turned the one goal deficit into a 5-goal win, thanks to Capote forking out another four goals and a number of suspensions hitting the Bahrain team. Danijel Saric made an extraordinary number of saves to further his side’s cause too.
Qatar coach Valero Rivera was happy with how his side performed in their 28-23 win against the West Asian neighbours.
“We did really well defensively and offensively too as well as in goalkeeping,” said Rivera.
“Bahrain were a strong opponent, but fatigue settled in as we saw in the first period. There were many fast breaks. “Argentina will be tough opponents too, so we will have to do our best in the next match.”
Qatari player Ali Anad was bullish about his side’s comeback.
“We made the comeback even though we’re missing seven players,” said Anad.
“Bahrain are a big team, but we did what the coach asked us to do.”
Bahrain coach Halldur Sigfusson lamented the lack of focus his team showed in the final 10 minutes.
“This match is obviously important for special reasons to both sides,” said Sigfusson.
“We controlled the first period and got in front, but we lost it in the second period and made several mistakes. We tried to make the comeback but it was too late.”
Qatar face Argentina tomorrow, while already-eliminated Bahrain and Japan meet in an all Asian clash on the same day.
Also yesterday, Spain smashed Uruguay 38-23 in their second match of Group I.
The La Roja Furia snatched the upper hand of the game against Uruguay from the beginning as they finished the first period with a 24-12 lead.
Spain continued their superb show in the second period and finished the game with a 38-23 victory over La Celeste.
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