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Date: 3/22/2019

The Men’s Challenge Cup quarter-finals throw off this weekend in Russia, Romania, Belgium and Portugal, as eight teams vie for places in the penultimate stage of the European Handball Federation’s third-tier international club competition.


This year, a total of seven nations are represented in this stage of the Challenge Cup. Russia count two clubs among the top eight: Dynamo-Victor and HC Neva SPb.


Dynamo-Victor have reached the quarter-finals for the second consecutive time, after making their debut in international competitions last season – when they were eliminated in this phase. In the two-leg quarter-final, Dynamo will meet Greek team A.E.K. Athens, who contested the trophy match last year but finished as runners-up. The first leg will be played in Russia this Saturday, followed by the second leg in Greece on March 30.


HC Neva SPb will travel to their opponents, Belgian side HC Vise BM, for the first leg. Vise have already made history by qualifying for the quarter-finals, as their previous best record was the Challenge Cup Last 16. The first leg of this encounter will take place on Sunday March 24, and the second game will be played on March 31.


One of the most interesting quarter-final clashes is between Portuguese team AM Madeira Andebol SAD and Finnish club Dicken. Madeira made it to the semi-finals last season, where they were knocked out of the race for the title by Athens. In contrast, Dicken are playing their maiden season in European cup competitions. The first leg of this pairing is set for Sunday in Portugal, while the second encounter will take place on Saturday March 30 in Finland.


The final quarter-final match-up sees Romanian club CSM Bucuresti taking on Bosnian club RK Borac m:tel, with the first match this Saturday and the second leg on March 30.


From each pairing, the aggregate winner over the 120 minutes of the two quarter-final matches will proceed to the semi-finals, to be played in late April.


More information on the Men’s Challenge Cup can be found on the official European cup website.