Crazy ending in Kelsey.  A bittersweet draw between Industria and THW Kiel

Bab/Piotr Polak/Simon Sekou during the fight

Anita Šibnica-Stanek

The Champions League round 11 match between Industria Kielce and THW Kiel ended on a points split. After intense tension in the final minutes, the two teams were forced to draw with a score of 36:36.

– If we look at history, we are definitely not the favorites in this match. This will be a good challenge for us, because in reality we can only pull off an upset in Kielce – said THW coach Philipp Geisha before Wednesday's match. The last time Kielce's team won at Hala Legionów, the Czech Republic was still in the game and scored four goals. There is not a single player in the yellow, white and blue team who remembers that match – it was almost thirteen years ago.

A good start to the second part of the group stage was very important for the Kielce team – the Polish champions are still in the race for one of the top two places in the classification, which is rewarded with direct advancement to the quarterfinals. However, Kelce's team has a tough calendar, and in the end, every point and even every goal could count.

From the first minutes it was clear that the hosts were very enthusiastic and wanted to impose their conditions from the beginning. The Polish champions started with a two-goal lead, but Kielce's side quickly picked up the pace, Harald Reinkind got off to a flying start and the visitors not only quickly equalized, but were also able to build the advantage. After a quarter of an hour, the score was three goals. Samir Belhassen contributed greatly to this – the Frenchman hit several very important balls and knocked the yellow, white and blue players out of rhythm.

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Wolf responded to the saves of his fellow professional, Alex Dogeshbaev and Nahi put in a good attacking performance and the yellow, white and blue team tied the score at 12 points, and the Kiel handballers made another surge and went into the break with a 15:17 lead.

The start of the second half was equal, but it was not good news for Kielce fans. The hosts had to make up for the loss – they did so in the 36th minute when Igor Karačić scored 21:21. However, the Polish champions did not follow up, as three consecutive goals were scored by THW players (Dwwniak, Pekler, Johansson) and for the seven players from Świętokczyski Voivodeship, it all started again.

Kiel tried to maintain their lead, but Dogishbayev's players continued to put pressure on their opponents – and they equalized again in the 52nd minute. From that moment on, emotions in Halla Legion reached their peak. Just over three minutes before the final siren sounded, the duo Andreas Wolff-Daniel Dogishbayev brought great joy to the hearts of the fans. First, the German defended Nikola Bellic's throw, and after a while the Spaniard used a counterattack. But the joy did not last long – Bielek quickly rehabilitated himself and scored two goals in a row and this time gave his team a draw.

Szymon Sićko responded and called Jich for a timeout with one minute and six seconds remaining. But the attack did not go according to the visitors' intentions, and Wolff blocked two balls. However, the referees awarded a penalty kick, and Ekberg showed his courage from the seventh meter line.

This time it was Duyshebayev who took the timeout, with twenty-six seconds left until the end of the fight. Igor Karacic took advantage of Kielce's final attack, but Ekberg managed to counter-attack and score the decisive goal of the match.

Industria Kelsey – THW Kiel 36:36 (15:17)

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