Last Updated: 12/08/12 2:15pm
Croatia's Jeff Gross in action
Croatia have won bronze in the men's handball after a comfortable victory 33-26 over Hungary in the Basketball Arena this afternoon.
Slavko Goluza's side, whose semi-final defeat to France denied them the opportunity to contest a record third gold medal, move up to joint top in the all-time list of medal winners with three alongside Russia, Yugoslavia and the Soviet Union.
They were just too strong for a tired-looking Hungary and led from the 12th minute, again inspired by the brilliance of Ivan Cupic, whose eight goals takes his tally for the tournament to 49.
For Hungary, the defeat means they have lost the bronze-medal match at the Games for a fourth time and never recovered from conceding six out of eight goals in the build up to half-time.
Both sides had had to pick themselves up from demoralising semi-final exits as Hungary narrowly lost 27-26 to Sweden, while Croatia's quest for a landmark third gold ended with a 25-22 reverse to France.
It was an even start to the game as the two neighbouring countries traded goals in the opening 10 minutes, with the scoreboard reading 6-6.
But Croatia made their move, throwing in five of the next seven goals to take an 11-8 lead, and that got even better as seven goals in five minutes allowed them to take a 19-14 advantage into the half-time break.
The outstanding Ivan Cupic again found his range and his five first-half goals took him clear at the top of the goalscorers' chart, while Blazenko Lackovic threw in four as the Balkans dominated.
They were able to keep that five-goal lead intact after the restart as Cupic and Lazovic continued to dominate in attack, snuffing out any hopes of a Hungary comeback.
And Croatia extended their cushion in the final 10 minutes with a number of fast breaks to record a comfortable victory and secure their place on the podium.
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