Romania’s women’s handball team was defeated 35-33 (17-14, 27-27) by Norway after injury time in Herning on Friday, in the semifinals of the World Championship in Denmark and are to play for the bronze medal.
Romania again played a sensational game and it was only mischance that prevented them from claiming the gold on Sunday.
The tricolour team played neck and neck with the defending Olympic and European champions, who had beaten Romania 26-22 in the direct game in the qualifying groups.
Romania began the game pretty well, took charge by 1-0 (min. 1) and 2-1 (in min. 3), then Norway took the advance by 4-2 (min. 7). Romania did not give in and the two sides led the score successively (6-5, 7-6 for Romania). At 9-9 (16), the Scandinavians scored twice and were again leading the game, taking the difference to 14-10 (21). The score at half-time was 17-14 for Norway, who missed a 7 meter shoot by Mork, at the last phase.
Romania approached the second half of the game in a determined manner, succeeding to go in front by 21-20 in minute 44, after four consecutive goals. The side coached by Tomas Ryde had as much as 23-21 (50), but could not keep this advantage. Romania also led 24-23 (52), but Norway overturned the score and the tricolours were the ones who fought to equal the score, which they managed every time, with the game being taken to injury time, after a shot by Valentina Ardean, at the last phase of the regular time, who was defended by the Norway goalkeeper.
Norway were more clear-headed and fresh in injury time, immediately took charge of the game by 29-27 (63) and then by three goals, 32-29. Romania tried to narrow the gap, got closer by one goal, with Norway finally settling the victory 35-33.
Romania will meet Poland in the final for the bronze medal from 3:45 (Romanian time) on Sunday.
Romania’s Cristina Neagu, top scorer at the World Women’s Handball Championships in Denmark
Romania’s left winger Cristina Neagu is the top scorer at the World Women’s Handball Championships in Denmark, a position she shares with Montenegrin Jovanka Radicevic with 53 goals each after Friday’s games.
Neagu scored 53 goals from 89 shots (60 percent), according to the International Handball Federation (IHF), while Radicevic scored 53 from 73 shots (73 percent).
Each of them still has to play a game, with Romania to battle for the bronze medal versus Poland on Sunday and Montenegro to face France for the 7th-8th places.
Best goalkeeper is Netherlands’ Tess Wester, with 109 interventions to 243 shots (45 percent). Romanian Paula Ungureanu does not feature in the top-14, as she has a percentage below 34 percent.
However, Ungureanu shares the top spot with Dane Rikke Poulsen by 7-metre shoot-out she defended by 36 percent, as the Romanian has 10 defended shoot-outs of 28, and the Dane 5 of 14.