Late last week, Romanian women's handball teams boasted two notable achievements. CSM Bucharest on Sunday qualified for the Champions League Final Four tournament, despite losing the away game played against the French side Metz, 20-27. In the first leg, CSM Bucharest had won 34-21. The other three teams qualified to the Final Four are Gyor of Hungary, Vardar Skopje of Macedonia and Russia's Rostov-Don. The draw for the semi-finals will take place on April 17 in Budapest.
The other notable achievement was the qualification of SCM Craiova to the EHF Cup finals. The Romanian club drew 18-all at home in the second leg of the semi-finals against Turkish side Kastamonu. A week ago, Craiova had won 23-22 away from home. In the final game Craiova will take on Vipers Kristiansand of Norway, which in the semis ousted Viborg of Denmark 29-23 in Saturday's return leg and 31-34 in last week's first leg.
Romanian tennis player Ana Bogdan reached the semi-finals of the WTA tournament in Bogota, Columbia, totaling some 226 thousand dollars in prize money. The Romanian lost however to Anna Karolina Schmiedlova of Slovakia in the semis, 6-3, 6-2. This was the second consecutive semi-final for Bogdan in the WTA circuit after the one played last week in Monterrey, Mexico.
In other news from tennis, let us note that Irina Maria Bara lost Sunday's finals in the ITF tournament hosted by Indian Harbour Beach, Florida, United States, with 60,000 dollars in prize money. The Romanian lost to local favourite Caroline Dolehide, 6-4, 7-5. Irina Maria Bara however won the doubles event alongside Silvia Soler-Espinosa of Spain, outplaying the all-American pair Jessica Pegula / Maria Sanchez in the final, 6-4, 6-2.
We end with news from football. This weekend saw a new round of the Romanian First League's group phase. In Group 1, on Saturday, Universitatea Craivoa defeated Poli Iasi 4-1 at home, while on Sunday CFR Cluj grabbed a 2-1 away win over Viitorul Constanta. In Group 2, on Friday, Dinamo Bucharest won 4-2 against FC Voluntari. On Saturday, Sepsi Sfantu Gheorghe defeated Gaz Metan Medias 2-1 on home turf, while on Sunday Concordia Chiajna won 2-1 against Juventus Bucharest.
Two matches are scheduled for Monday: Astra Giurgiu will play FCSB in Group 1, while Poli Timisoara will take on FC Botosani in Group 2. (Translated by Vlad Palcu)