Multiple winners of all major titles in handball except the European Championship, Croatia once again failed to add the only silverware missing from their trophy cabinet after a 26:22 defeat by hosts Serbia in a nerve-jangling EHF EURO 2012 semi-final.
But the Croatian pivot, one of the few players remaining from the squad that won the 2003 World Championship and the 2004 Olympics, heaped praise on the organizers of EHF EURO 2012 as he also expressed the hope that his team would finally prevail in a bronze medal match.
"I think the Serbian Handball Federation has done an outstanding job in organizing this EHF EURO 2012. We stayed in first class hotels and were made to feel at home by our hosts, especially in the Preliminary Round in Vrsac where the countryside tranquillity really suited us.
"But I can’t complain about the facilities in Novi Sad or Belgrade either, they were top notch. And the European Handball Federation has certainly done well to set up a competition format allowing rest days in the final stages, as it’s essential for players to recuperate from a tough schedule," Vori told ehf-euro.com in his interview during the EHF EURO 2012 Media Day.
"We have a bad experience in third-place matches, as I’ve lost three or four games with Croatia where the bronze medal was at stake. We have our sights on the 2012 Olympic Games in London but we first have to take a look at our EHF EURO 2012 campaign when it’s over and accept that there were some flaws in our game.," he added.
Vori acknowledged there was something left to be desired after Croatia were knocked out of the gold medal match by the host nation.
"We would be happy to win the bronze medal as our half of the draw was exceptionally strong and reaching the last four was quite an achievement. But once there you always want to reach the final and we couldn’t because Serbia were the better team," he said.
The towering line player also hailed the achievement of teams from the former Yugoslavia in the 16-nation tournament.
"The fact that four teams from the former Yugoslavia will have finished in the top six shows that the region is capable of producing top-quality handball. I was especially surprised to see how well FYR Macedonia have done and I wish them the best of luck in their bid to qualify for the London Olympics. Their fantastic fans who came here in droves deserve it," said Vori.