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Frankfurt through to German Cup semis

dpa logodpa 28/02/2017 BARRY WHELAN

Frankfurt have reached the semi-finals of the German Cup but Borussia Dortmund will have to wait longer as their tie with Sportfreunde Lotte was postponed.

Defender Marco Russ made a brief but emotional return from cancer as Eintracht Frankfurt reached the semi-final of the German Cup with a 1-0 win over second-division Arminia Bielefeld on Tuesday.

But Borussia Dortmund's match at third-division Sportfruende Lotte was postponed following heavy rain and snow.

At Frankfurt's Commerzbank-Arena, midfielder Danny Blum scored with a shot inside the penalty area in the sixth minute to put the Bundesliga side into the last four for the first time since 2007.

With the game already in stoppage time, Russ was able to make his first appearance since successfully overcoming testicular cancer.

After watching virtually the whole game from the substitutes' bench he finally got his chance when coach Niko Kovac signalled a change in the final minute. It took another two minutes of stoppage time for a break in the play before the 31-year-old defender could replace Aymane Barkok to a standing ovation from the crowd of around 39,000.

He saw about two minutes of action as Frankfurt held out, before being hugged by his wife, who was in tears, and daughter on the pitch.

Russ underwent surgery in May on a tumour detected during a doping test and also had chemotherapy treatment before he was well enough to return to training in January.

"It was an emotional moment for me. It was a long time, a hard time," Russ said.

Kovac said: "That wasn't an easy victory, and I am delighted for Marco Russ. It was a very emotional moment."

Frankfurt are now a game away from reaching the final, as they last did in the 2005-06 season.

The day's other cup tie between third-division Sportfreunde Lotte and Dortmund was ruled unplayable by referee Felix Brych after days of heavy rain was followed by heavy snowfall before kick-off.

Earlier Tuesday, the Dortmund team bus had to be freed by a tractor in Lotte, near Osnabrueck in north-west Germany, after becoming stuck in a field while attempting a turning manoeuvre. The players were not on the bus at the time.

In the remaining quarter-finals on Wednesday, SV Hamburg greet Borussia Moenchengladbach, and Bundesliga champions and cup holders Bayern Munich are at home to Schalke.

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