This Wednesday, the Mielec team coached by Krzysztof Lipka will play another match in the PGNiG Superleague, against Meble Wójcik Elbląg.
Newly promoted this season, the Elbląg team coached by Jacek Będzikowski features young, ambitious players, who have shown fighting spirit in games against VIVE, Wisła, or Azoty. They did not manage to snatch any points away from the favorites, but their hard work finally paid off in round 10, giving them a victory against Sandra Spa Pogoń Szczecin and the long-awaited 3 points – the only ones so far.
This means that Wednesday’s home team rank last in the overall table, but are just one point down from Szczecin. Stal can be more relaxed – Krzysztof Lipka’s “Chechens” rank 10th, and need just 2 points to catch up with the 9th best team, KPR Legionowo.
In other good news, the reserve list will be shorter, as Marcin Miedziński and Sergei Dementev, who missed the previous game in Opole, are going to Elbląg. The latter had his first training with the team on Monday, though his appearance in the next game has not yet been decided.
Michał Chodara and Jakub Kłoda have not yet fully recovered, but they should be fit to play on Wednesday.
However, Hubert Łukawski, Grzegorz Barnaś, Michał Wypych, Wiktor Kawka, and Marcin Basiak will sit the away game out. Interestingly, Jacek Będzikowski also has a problem with injuries in his team, and will have five players missing the match – a fact noted by both teams’ coaches.
Jacek Będzikowski said: “We know exactly what to expect from Stal and what to do to defeat them. Even with the number of injuries, the opponent will play just like in any other game. Their lineup is the only thing that changes, and this is what we need to look out for. I think we can win this home game, but it is still a few days away, and I hope everyone will stay fit to play.”
Tomasz Sondej: “Elbląg are an eager, ambitious team, and they will surely put up a fight. I think we are going to win, as we are much more experienced, and it seems we have exhausted our share of injuries this season.
The next few days are going to be very busy, and our long journey north begins on Tuesday. Our first stop is Gdańsk, where we are going to spend the night after an evening training session, so that everyone is well rested before the game with Meble at 6:30 PM on Wednesday.”
Back in Mielec, the “White and Blues” will not have much time to rest. On Saturday, they will go on their home court to take on Europe’s best team – VIVE Tauron Kielce.
PGNiG Superleague round 16: Meble Wójcik Elbląg – SPR Stal Mielec, February 8, 2017, 6:30 PM, Hala Sportowo – Widowiskowa MOSiR, ul. Grunwaldzka 135, Elbląg