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FIVE MATCHES TO DECIDE EVERYTHING

51 matches have been played in Group A so far- but the only confirmed position prior to the final round is the elimination of bottom place Kadetten Schaffhausen.

FC Barcelona Lassa and Paris Saint-Germain Handball are still fighting for the top position, which allows a team to skip the Last 16. Bjerringbro-Silkeborg and Oren Wisla Plock are aiming for the final spot in the knockout stage.

Telekom Veszprém and SG Flensburg-Handewitt are facing off for the third position in the Match of the Week.

•  Barcelona and PSG are fighting for the top spot
•  Plock and Bjerringbro are still in the race for the Last 16
•  Flensburg coach Ljubomir Vranjes faces his future team Veszprém
•  Flensburg and Veszprém fight for the third position in the direct duel
•  Competition top scorer Gabor Csaszar has the chance to increase his lead as he still has two matches ahead

SG Flensburg-Handewitt (GER) vs Kadetten Schaffhausen (SUI)
Wednesday 08 March, 18:30 hrs local time, live on ehfTV.com

Due to Flensburg’s busy schedule, this match needed to be postponed to the 14th round. The German side is favorite to win – they won the first leg 29:26. However, Schaffhausen clearly improved since Petr Kukucka has taken over as their new coach.

Last round the Swiss champions were unlucky to miss a draw with Veszprém. But their center back Gabor Csaszar being in brilliant form at the moment -he is leading the top scorer list with 76 goals – Schaffhausen is out of the race for the Last 16.

After their defeats against PSG and Barcelona, Flensburg got back on track with an unexpected close home victory against Bjerringbro. They need to beat Schaffhausen to remain in the race for the third position, which would provide them with a home match in the second leg of the Last 16.

Telekom Veszprém (HUN) vs SG Flensburg-Handewitt (GER) – Match of the Week
Saturday 11 March, 17:30 hrs local time.

Just three days after their match with Schaffhausen, the 2014 VELUX EHF Champions League winners Flensburg have another crucial duel which is featured as the ehfTV.com Match of the Week. Only if they manage beat Kadetten, and win at Veszprém, will they be able to finish in the third position. In all other cases, the record-holding Hungarian champions are ahead of Flensburg.

An interesting dimension of the match is the fact that Flensburg coach Ljubomir Vranjes will face his future squad, as from June on he will take over Veszprém and the Hungarian national team. Veszprém have not lost any of their three matches against German opponents in the group phase so far, as they beat Kiel twice and tied at Flensburg after losing a clear lead.

It is still unclear whether Veszprém’s playmaker Aron Palmarsson will be able to return after his injury- if the Icelander is fit, it would increase the hosts’ chances of winning.

Veszprém have lost two home matches in this phase -against Barcelona and PSG, while Flensburg’s away record includes four wins and two defeats- also against Barcelona and PSG.

FC Barcelona Lassa (ESP) vs Orlen Wisla Plock (POL)
Saturday 11 March, 20:00 hrs local time.

After their thrilling tie at Kiel in the previous round, Barcelona is only one step away from finishing on top. But the Xavi Pascual’s team needs to beat Plock to make it straight to the quarter-finals like they did in the 2015/16 season when they topped Group B. PSG are only one point below, and the French champions have won the direct encounter between the two teams on aggregate goal difference.

In the first leg, Barcelona turned the tide after being down at the break to finally take a clear 28:23 win at Plock. But it is not just a crucial match for Barcelona: The visitors are aiming for their fourth straight ticket for the Last 16. The battle for the final Last 16 spot has boiled down to only two points in the final round- and as Plock had lost the direct encounter against Bjerringbro they need at least a draw at Barcelona to secure their spot. Otherwise, Bjerringbro can pass the Poles with a win in their match against Schaffhausen on Sunday.

This is only the fourth duel between Barcelona and Plock in history – so far the Catalans have won three of the encounters.

Bjerringbro-Silkeborg (DEN) vs Kadetten Schaffhausen (SUI)
Sunday 12 March 16:50 hrs local time, live on ehfTV.com

Crunch time has come for the squad of Peter Bredsdorff-Larsen. They will know their fate when the match throws off, as Plock will have played their match on Saturday. If the Poles lose, Bjerringbro needs to beat Schaffhausen to make it to the Last 16 for the second time since the 2012/13 season.

In the first leg at Switzerland, the Danish champions were extremely lucky to take a 25:24 win in their first ever duel with Schaffhausen. On 16 October 2016, Bjerringbro beat Plock 33:24, but did not have another win until round 12 where they had sensational 24:21 win at Kiel – this might be a decisive result in the end.

Schaffhausen has nothing to lose at Denmark, as they are already eliminated from the Last 16.

Paris Saint-Germain Handball (FRA) vs THW Kiel (GER)
Sunday 12 March, 17:00 hrs local time.

PSG will know before the start of their match if the duel of two powerhouses is for honor only, or for the top position. If Barcelona beat Plock the day before, PSG will be confirmed to finish in second place regardless the result against Kiel.

Three former THW players -Thierry Omeyer, Daniel Narcisse and Nikola Karabatic, plus the duo of coaches, Noka Serdarusic and Staffan Olsson- are currently with PSG, but as both sides have already faced each other this season-this is not unusual for them. Paris had beaten THW only once on the home court so far, and they lost the opener of the group phase at Kiel before winning eleven of twelve upcoming group matches.

After some weak results, Kiel rose like a phoenix from the ashes last weekend, forcing a tie against Barcelona, and maybe this draw will inadvertently enable PSG to skip the Last 16.

 

England v Italy: World Rugby says it is ‘too early to speculate on law changes’

It is "too early to speculate" on potential rule changes after Italy used controversial tactics against England, says the sport's world governing body.

The Azzurri refused to engage in rucks as the home side won Sunday's Six Nations match 36-15 at Twickenham.

England boss Eddie Jones criticized Italy's tactics, and said law-makers should have a "very close look at it".

A spokesperson for World Rugby told the BBC it could 'clarify' the law, rather than drastically change it.

Italy's plan, masterminded by defense coach Brendan Venter, left no offside line after a tackle.

The Azzurri's half-backs then crowded an unsettled England backline.

England was 10-5 down at half-time but recovered in the second half to secure a bonus-point win.

"We challenged people's minds and a lot of credit must go to Brendan for doing what he did," said Italy head coach Conor O'Shea.

How Italy's plan almost failed before it started

O'Shea has revealed Italy's plan was almost scuppered the day before the match.

He said referee Romain Poite told Italy's coaching team there had been a change in the laws during the week, which they were not aware of.

Their original idea was to target England scrum-half Danny Care directly after rejecting any notion of forming a ruck, and they worked on that in training.

But Police told them they could no longer legally challenge the scrum-half.

"It meant we had to adapt even between Saturday's meeting and the match," said O'Shea.

Instead of chasing Care, Italy counterpart Edoardo Gori blocked his running and passing lines by standing in what would have been offside positions had any rucks formed.

O'Shea said: "There was offside in our game against Ireland that was clarified as being onside.

"Brendan came to me and said: 'Please listen and don't think I'm mad.' We talked as a group of coaches and said: 'OK, will we go for this?'

"A lot of thought has gone into it. We didn't come up with this overnight."

O'Shea, a former director of rugby at London Irish and Harlequins, said he was "incredibly proud" of his players.

He said: "We did not come here to lose, and we are gutted to lose.

"We have to change in Italy and I am sick and tired of people having a pop and having a go. We came to win."

'Fury was righteous and often misplaced' – analysis

England was as ready for it as Don Bradman was for Bodyline, or Scott Styris in 2008 when Kevin Pietersen swapped hands on his bat handle and switch-hit him for six.

On the pitch, they were first confused, then angry, and for a long period then neutered. In the stands, it was more demonstrative yet.

There are few sights in rugby as striking as Twickenham Man in full red-cheeked fury, and on Sunday his fury was both righteous and often misplaced.

Italy was not acting illegally.

Coach Conor O'Shea had run the tactic past referee Romain Poite on Saturday, and not only been given the all-clear but a little bit of advice too: to be within the spirit of the laws as well as the wording, do not get within a meter of the nine.

 

Nikita Kucherov scores natural hat trick with three identical goals

Fool me once, shame on you. Fool me twice, shame on me. Fool me three times in the exact same fashion, well, that’s more shame than even Cersei Lannister can handle.

Tampa Bay Lightning forward Nikita Kucherov scored a natural hat trick — three consecutive goals in a game without anyone else on either team scoring — during the second period of Monday’s game against the Senators in Tampa, but really it’s how he did it that’s so impressive. All three goals came on the power play, and on all three Kucherov blasted a one-timer from the face-off circle to the left of the goaltender.

Just look at how similar they all were.

You would think that the Sens would eventually catch on and make sure to mark that guy while on the penalty kill. Then again, Alex Ovechkin has cashed checks from that spot (to the goaltender’s right) for over a decade.

That’s not to take away from Kucherov’s execution, either. It’s one thing to continue to be open for the opportunities, but it’s another to finish them as effectively as the 23-year-old Kucherov did on Monday night.

The hat trick pushed Kucherov to 26 goals on the year and helped power Tampa Bay to a 5-1 win over Ottawa.

Serb Filip Filipovic is the best waterpolo player for 2016

One of the most famous magazines for swimming sports "Swimming World" declared Serb Filip Filipovic best Waterpolo player in the world for 2016. And last year, the best Waterpolo player came from Serbia, and it was Dusko Pijetlovic.

"This recognition is most deserving my whole team. If it was not their efforts, and the great work he did coaching staff, I did not have to play at this level. So I'm honored, but that prize belongs to everyone, "said Filipovic.

Filipovic with a prestigious award he won in 2009 and 2011 when he was voted the best by LEN, and in 2014 was the best and according to FIN.

In the ladies competition for best pronounced American Ashley Johnson, who won for the third time this award.

France ran over Brazil at the start of World Cup

Within the first match of the World Handball Championship, France with a convincing game, solid defense on Thierry Omejer and the team beat Brazil 31-16. France recorded the first win in Group A in the only match that was played on today's program.

The impressive game of 'experts' in the beginning' lead to 7-2 after the first 10 minutes which the dominant host in the next 10 minutes turned it 11-3. An excellent edition of the French, the risk game the Brazilian coach with seven players and easiest goals of "cocks" were the reasons for the high contrast score of 17-7.

In the second part, France continued in the same style. French goalkeepers have changed, but the difference continues to increase, and the double-digit lead remained until the end of the match. Point of this match put goalkeeper of France, who scored a goal through the field for a final 31-16

The most precise of the match was Valentine Port with six goals, while Guigou, Karabatic, Narcisse Njokas and scored three. In Brazil, Toledo was the brightest point with 5 goals.

New York fined Rose for skipping maintained New Orleans

The team of New York Knicks game miserably in the past month in the NBA and the last 16 games recorded just five wins which is too short for the composition of "Madison Square Garden" last summer which drastically strengthen toys staff.

Obviously there are some problems in the team, and if you add and unexpected "take off" like that of Derrick Rose on the eve of battle with New Orleans Pelicans (96-110), then perhaps no surprise that the results are what you and Knicks are 11th in the East

The Rose mysteriously disappeared before the game with "pelicans" though he was announced for it. Without having enough of the club decided to leave and are therefore at the center of media attention.

Even from the camp of the Knicks did not know why he missed New Orleans to eventually turns out for family reasons had to return home to Chicago. This "trip" the experienced playmaker will pay New York decided to punish him, but will not suspend. He has already trained with the rest of the team and is expected to play a match with Philadelphia.

Derrick in his first season in the team of the "big apple" has averaged 17.3 points, 4.5 assists and 3.9 rebounds.

 

Jure Dolenec agreed contract with Barcelona

Handball player in Slovenia Jure Dolenec, after the end of the season will leave Montpellier and will move to the most successful European club Barcelona.

Dolenec (27) with the Barcelona signed a two-year contract and will be the second Slovenian Luke Zhvizhej who wore the famous club.

Dolenec play in right-back position, which play the Macedonian captain Kire Lazarov.

Montpellier had already found a replacement for Dolenec and agreed with the son of the famous Jackson Richardson, Melvin. He is currently player of Chambery, and Montpellier signed a four-year contract.

12 years ago Janica Kostelic disqualified competition without flaps and stick

 

On Sljeme near Zagreb Ride “Snow Queen” for the World Cup women’s slalom, which is only the first half of the competition. Exactly 12 years ago on this track, the unique Janica Kostelic drove one of his most legend races in slalom.

 

 

Croatian heroine had peh at the start and remained without guard and stick, but decided to continue to ski. Unrivaled Janice despite inexplicable pain underwent the first goal in a victory for an anthology.

 

Shock for Mirko Alilovic and the team of Veszprem

Former Croatian representative goalkeeper Mirko Alilovic, by the end of the year, will no longer be part of the team of Veszprem, it was confirmed by his club in a statement wrote that Alilovic home care will receive injections.

According to the first estimates of doctors from Croatia, Mirko Alilovic has thrombosis in knee situation that complicates his playing for the Hungarian team this season.

After leaving the team, he fully dedicates Veszprém, where he had a good season, and this for him is a blow.

SEHA chose the best moments of the season: Kiss Stoilov Terzic top 10

Regional Handball League posted a video on its Facebook page with the most interesting moments that marked the year 2016.

On this list, particularly second, found the kiss between Terzic and Stojanche Stoilov during the match between Vardar and Veszprem.

Macedonian midfielder received a blow from Mirsad Terzic, who kissed ask forgiveness from Stoilov. That moment is deservedly among the ten most interesting in 2016. SEHA League.

TOP 10 MOMENTS OF 2016: The time has come to highlight the funniest, the most thrilling and charming moments of the year 2016! Here are our TOP 10 picks:
1) Pavlovic outplays Marsenic SF match: RK Vardar vs RK Zagreb
2) Kiss on the court Stoilov & Terzic
3) Nagy at victory ceremony of Final 4 Veszprém Handball Team
4) Terzic Final 4 penalty SF match: Veszprem vs БГК им. Мешкова
5) And the Oscar goes to Sterbik: Final 4 promo video
6) Be8player BHFC winner receives her giant VIP ticket
7) Gajic Junior & Senior Flash interview
8) Spiderman Lelic saves the net: RK NEXE Našice vs Meshkov Brest
9) Jankovic made the stands go wild RK Borac m: tel vs Tatran Prešov
10) Pesic awkward moments at Kids Day