Serbia: 0
Ukraine: 0

    Niksa Unkovic, Adam Nedic
    Pavlo Kardakov

    Adam Nedic 1/2

Match report


Serbia and Ukraine met for the first time on Friday night, in the second of three matches between the two sides and Russia, for the Milan Kosanovic Cup. The fans at Belgrade’s Ada Ciganlija stadium enjoyed a tough and competitive game from beginning til end. Serbian coach Marko Jankovic handed four debutants national team caps, with seven front-line players unavailable through overseas commitments and injury, including captain Dalibor Vukanovic, out injured, and vice-captain Soni Radovanovic, in France to renew his contract with Elite 1 club Lescure.

Serbia opened the game with an early lead. Stand off Adam Nedic (pictured) conjured up a great pass to put Niksa Unkovic through a gap four a fourth minute 4-0 lead. The Ukrainians hit back on 15 minutes when Oleksandr Skorbach’s long rifled pass found Pavlo Kardakov who grounded to level things up. There was no change to the scoring in the rest of the half.

The home side repeated its quick start to the half and were on the baord through man of the match Adam Nedic, who registered his first try for the national team. Nedic converted his own try to give Serbia what would be the winning points. The remainder of the half was a gripping trench battle with both sides matching one another’s intensity, but Serbia’s solid defence was good enough to see them through to the final whistle.

Marko Jankovic, Serbian national team coach: “I expected just such a strong and tough match. The Ukrainian team is extremely well-prepared, very committed and plays great defensively. I told my players before the game to pay close attention, because the Ukrainians have a great sports culture, from the time of the Soviet Union. I didn't want to risk Dalibor Vukanović because he suffered some minor injuries in the Serbian Grand Final. I am happy, because playing this opponent is almost like a simulation of the situation we can expect with the Russians [in the RLWC qualifier].“

Ivan Susnjara, Radovan Tasic, Niksa Unkovic, Stevan Stevanovic, Mirko Rozovic, Adam Nedic, Milan Susnjara, Dejan Lukenic, Zoran Pesic, Vuk Turdisic, Stefan Nedenkovic, Milos Catic, Stefan Nikovic. Subs: Nenad Radevic, Danilo Delic, Slavisa Zekic, Nebojsa Zivanovic

Volodymyr Mashkin, Oleksandr Korobov, Igor Shevtsov, Sergii Romanko, Oleksandr Skorbach, Dmytro Semerenko, Volodymyr Loban, Maksym Miroshnychenko, Iurii Smolii, Mykhailo Troian, Sergei Kravchenko, Oleksandr Kozak, Pavlo Kardakov. Subs: Vadym Tolstoy, Artur Martyrosyan, Danilo Pozhydaiev