Veszprem defend the trophy after penalty thriller

Telekom Veszprem

Telekom Veszprem are the new and old champions of the SEHA – Gazprom League, like in 2020, when they won the final at Zadar against Vardar 35:27. The team of new coach Momir Ilic was victorious on Sunday at the same place, but in a completely different way. Against PPD Zagreb, Veszprem needed to go through the first ever penalty shoot-out in a final of the SEHA – Gazprom League. In the end, two saves of Vladimir Cupara against Davor Cavar and Marin Sipic decided the penalty shoot-out. Petar Nenadic netted in the final penalty for the 31:29 (15:13, 27:27) victory. 

Zagreb gave a great fight to Veszprem, but finally missed their second trophy after 2013. For Veszprem it was the fourth trophy after 2015, 2016 and 2020. Funny enough, the Hungarian record champions on three of their four titles in Croatia. Zagreb had two penalty shoot-out after beating Meshkov Brest in the semi-final.  

Final: PPD Zagreb vs Telekom Veszprem 31:29 (27:27, 13:15) after penalty shoot-out 

Due to injuries, Zagreb’s Zvonimir Srna and Matej Hrstic were not on the team list and Sandro Obradovic was only on the bench. But the “young boys” of head Ivica Obrvan gave a strong fight to the experienced stars from Veszprem. Until the 10:10 PPD had not been below against Veszprem, then mainly goalkeeper Vladimir Cupara (nine saves in total) became the crucial key for Veszprem’s intermediate 15:12 lead. Right with the halftime buzzer Davor Cavar netted in a penalty for the 13:15. 

In attack, the back court shooters Petar Nenadic and Yahia Omar (finally both on eight goals) took the control for Veszprem, bit on the other hand, Zagreb never gave up. PPD’s heroes were the same like in the victorious semi-final against Meshkov Brest: goalkeeper Filip Ivic, who saved a penalty of Manuel Strlek in the shoot-out, and the young back court players Filip Vistorop (best PPD scorer by seven goals) and Edin KlisB.

The 23:20 was Veszprem’s last three-goal advance, the Ivic started his show, and Zagreb got closer until the 25:25 equalizer five minutes before the end. Then the thrilling endgame started, Veszprem took the lead twice, Zagreb equalized twice. In the last 15 seconds, both sides had the chance to win, but for Zagreb, Csaba Leimeter missed the last shot, before Yahia’s last shot missed the goal two. 

In the penalty shoot-out, Yahia, Marguc, Mahe and Nenadic scored for Veszprem, Klis and Vistorop for PPD.