Terrassa and Apollon to play for the first title

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Another fine win over Enka Istanbul sent Terrassa to the final LEN’s new competition, the Challenger Cup. They will face Apollon of Greece which trashed the other Spanish side Tenerife.

Semi-finals, 2nd leg

Enka Istanbul (TUR) v CN Terrassa (ESP) 8-10 – aggregate: 20-25

Apollon Smyrnis (GRE) v Tenerife Echeyde (ESP) 18-8 – aggregate: 28-19

Terrassa learnt the lesson from the first leg and never let Enka smell blood in the return leg, not even in their own pool in Istanbul. The Spaniards, holding a three-goal lead from the first leg, went ahead early on and managed to force the hosts into a chasing game. Indeed, the Turks could never lead in the entire match which was very intense and tense with 31 exclusions. The home side’s best efforts were erasing the two-goal deficits from time to time, but after a while they ran out of steam, and Terrassa closed down the contest with three connecting goals after 7-7.

Apollon made it clear within minutes that they would prevent the all-Spanish final. The Greeks, trailing by a single goal after the first leg, staged the perfect storm by taking a 4-0 lead in less than three minutes, while Tenerife missed a penalty. That set the tone, the hosts were 6-1 up after eight minutes and held on for 9-4 by halftime.

Two more goals from the Greeks and a second penalty miss from their rivals signalled the virtual end of the contest at 11-4 – indeed, the hosts tore the Spaniards apart and won by ten at the end. They just need to pass another Spanish test to lift the trophy.