This weekend the curtain falls on the BENE League, the cross-border handbalcompetitie with six clubs from Belgium and the Netherlands. Achilles Bocholt, Hubo Initia Hasselt and the Dutch teams Fiqas Aalsmeer and OCI-LIONS compete in Den Bosch in the Final Four for the title.
Saturday the semi-finals on the program. Defending champion Bocholt closed the regular season as number 1 and opens at Aalsmeer.
“We view it as the finalematch”, says coach Bart Lenders. “The focus is entirely on that match, because if we make the final want to play, we must first pass Aalsmeer. The Final Four is always a bite your fingernails, in which details will decide. All the teams are each other’s worth.”
Bocholt performed over the last few weeks a little less. During the penultimate day was lost to OCI-LIONS and last week there was the heavy 40-27 defeat against Herpertz to Promote.
“Last week was not good. The level must be put up”, and realises Lenders. “The advantage is that my boys know what they need to do to the title to address. The group made this last year all at once. The physical readiness will play a decisive role. During the Final Four, you play two very intense matches. The team must therefore be fit. On that front, we have some tapping. Bartosz Kedziora is out with a knee injury. Roel Valkenborgh troubles with a vingerblessure. It is now up to the group to anticipate. They are as a team able to accommodate this but two of the injured players are two wisselmogelijkheden less. And that you catch not just.”
In the other semi-final takes Hasselt against OCI-LIONS. The coach of the Limburgers, Korneel Douven, won last year’s BENE-League as T2 in Bocholt. He placed his team this season for the Final Four and the finals of the Cup of Belgium.
“I am pleased that my team are back in full participate for the prices, ‘ says Douven. “I’ve grown in my role as a T1, which is not at all to compare with that of T2. Last year I had more of an advisory role and was my input is limited. Now I carry the responsibility and consultation I in my turn with my T2 Piet Vanloo.”
“If we are this weekend, want us to qualify for the finals and the final also want to win, we will be out of another keg to taps than the past few weeks,” says the coach of Hasselt. “The level must be put up. Both defensively as offensively. Two weeks ago we won at home of OCI-LIONS. We played as a strong match. Last week that was not the case. Two weeks ago, played OCI LIONS without Ramos. OCI-LIONS with or without Ramos is a world of difference. I give us a 50% chance. It is close and the shape of the day is important. It is also to wait and see how the group copes with stress. You can all work out, except for stress management.”
The winners of the semi finals play Sunday afternoon, the finals and bet for the title in the BENE League.