Doha, September 01 (QNA) – Less than 24 hours after unluckily losing their semifinal against Madrid, Al-Sadd had recovered perfectly. Thanks to their clear victory against Zamalek they reached a podium place. Like in 2011, the African champions from Egypt missed the medals close, finishing fourth again.
Bronze final: Al-Sadd (QAT) Al-Zamalek (EGY) 32:26 (16:11)
Seven goals of Mustafa Krad and nine strikes of overall tournament top scorer Dragan Gajic were the keys to a well-deserved bronze final victory for Al-Sadd, winning a prize money of 150.000 US Dollar. Aside goalkeeper Primoz Prost again was the tower of power with overall 17 saves. Even ten goals of Ahmed Mostafa were not enough for Zamalek to reach the podium.
Aside Issem Tej, who was suspended for four IHF club competitions matches after his red card against Madrid, Al-Sadd did not use their “mastermind” Nikola Karabatic. In defence the IHF Super Globe host tried to stop Zamalek top star Hussein Zaky with an early man-to-man defence. A measure that initially fit as Al-Sadd got way to 8:5. The Egyptians fought hard to level the game, but the host’s defence including strong goalkeeper Primoz Prost stood stronger and intercepted many balls to start their counter-attacks. And if they could not score by fast-breaks, they counted on the shots of William Accambray and later-on Krad. Even a goalkeeper change to superb Mahmoud Ibrahim did not stop the downswing of Zamalek, which were trailed by five goals at the break.
In the second half first the goals of Dragan Gajic kept the distance by constant four or five goals, before a double-strike of Mustafa Krad pre-decided the game at 24:17 in minute 41.And Krad even extended the gap to nine goals at 30:21, then Al-Sadd decelerated and allowed the Egyptians to get a better final result.
Patrice Canayer, coach Al Sadd: Our strong defence with different tactics was the key to win the third place. We had to focus on defence, as we missed two strong attack players like Tej and Karabatic. In my opinion it was a successful experience to join the Qatar players and the Montpellier players. The local players really improved and it was my aim to create a harmony in the whole squad. In the future I would like to help to develop handball in Qatar.
Wissem Hmam, player Al-Sadd: I agree with our coach that defence and our goalkeeper Primoz Prost were the keys to success. It was a good match and we are happy to finish third.
Aslah Abdelhamied, assistant coach Zamalek: It was a real tough match against a very strong opponent. We had a good preparation, but our player were out of form, especially in attack, but also in defence we lacked concentration against a very good team with lots of professional players. We did not play any official match in the last 18 months due to the situation in Egypt. So we could not participate in any match inside or outside Egypt. So the fourth place is a big achievement for us, compared to the opponents we had to face. We don t know what will be the plan for the next season, we don t know how it works. In two months we play the African club championship, we don t know how we should pay our players.
Hesham Sanad, player Zamalek: We were less concentrated than before, this lack of concentration in the end of the match the key to lose this match.(END)