Triumph after crystal meth shock: Magdeburg wins DHB Cup against all odds

Triumph after crystal meth shock
Magdeburg wins the DHB Cup against all odds

SC Magdeburg is the German handball cup winner: The SCM travels to the Final4 tournament in Cologne with worries, and at the end of an emotional weekend there is a great triumph. Last year they dramatically missed out on the title, but now everything is going smoothly in the final.

The handball players of SC Magdeburg briefly pushed the doping fuss surrounding Nikola Portner into the background and won the German Cup title for the third time in their club history. Led by goalkeeper Sergey Hernandez, the Elbestadt team beat the outsiders MT Melsungen 30:19 (13:11) and can dream of a triple. The SCM is in the quarter-finals of the Champions League and has a good chance of winning the championship in the league. The Hessians, on the other hand, have to wait for their first ever title, but can almost certainly plan for the European League.

In the Cologne cauldron, which was sold out with 19,750 fans, Magdeburg’s Lukas Mertens was in top form with seven goals. After two final defeats in a row, the SCM ended its personal final curse and can look forward to a bonus of 200,000 euros. At Melsungen, Timo Kastening stood out with five goals. SG Flensburg-Handewitt had previously secured third place with a 31:28 win against Füchse Berlin.

“We did it for Portner”

With the success in front of national coach Alfred Gislason’s eyes, Magdeburg’s turbulent week finally came to a happy end. Portner’s positive doping test caused unnecessary unrest before the final weekend and massively affected the preparation. “It was all difficult. We did it for him too,” SCM professional Lukas Mertens said after the semi-final.

However, Portner’s absence from the final tournament was not a sporting loss, as his representative Hernandez surpassed himself. After an impressive performance in the semi-finals, the Spaniard also thwarted Melsunger’s numerous chances in the final. The fact that the game initially turned out to be even was due to the initially strong MT keeper Nebojsa Simic. On the other hand, the SCM made an unusually large number of technical errors.

After both teams had overcome their initial nervousness, an incredible battle developed on the floor. Intense and sometimes very hard duels made the importance of this game clear. Both Magdeburg and Melsungen continued to lose the ball easily. Shortly before the break, the Elbestadt team took the lead for the first time with three goals (13:10).

After the change, the favorite extended his lead. National player Mertens in particular now got into a run and scored his fifth goal within a few minutes to make it 21:17. Melsungen’s resistance was broken and the defense opened more and more loopholes. The SCM was now able to easily win the title.

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