Sporting qualified for the Round of 16 of the European League by beating France’s Nîmes Gard 32-30 at the Pavilhão João Rocha in a fantastic Group D Round of 16 game where the lions were forced to prevail in order to move forward. They found themselves in 3rd place (11 pts) of the group, dismissing the opponent from the first position because, due to the defeat, they were overtaken by the North Macedonians of Eurofarm Pelister, although both with 12 dots.
It was a match in which goalkeeper Matevz Skok stood out in the 2nd half and the young Francisco Costa, only 17 years old, who with 11 goals (6 in the 1st half) was the top scorer of the match and a devil on the loose next to the opposing zone.
After 15 draws, including 9 after the break and the last at 29-29, the greens and whites, who returned from the locker room were only disadvantaged up to 21-22, took the lead with two goals from brothers. Martim and Francisco (31-29) with 1:30 to go.
The Egyptian Mohamed (8/11 on the other hand) still left everything open to reduce to 31-30, but during the next attack Carlos Ruesga killed all doubts by scoring the second goal 11 seconds from the final whistle.