Issue 123 June 2 2010
GB Men Prepare for Euro 2012 Battles Victory Over Belgium Marks Improvement in Form Ahead of London Tournament WITH little more than a week until their first international matches on home soil, the Great Britain men’s handball team have been finalising their preparations for the 2012 European Championships. The squad arrived in Britain on Sunday following their morale-boosting 26-24 victory over hosts Belgium in a friendly match last week, and travelled to Loughborough University to use their topclass training facilities. The win over Belgium was GB’s first over European opposition for around four years, and although they lost out in the second fixture the following day it still provided a real benchmark of the progress being made by the squad.
Trailing 14-10 at half time, GB hit back hard after the break and were rarely behind. They levelled at 14-14 within three minutes of the second half, and continued to control the match right up to the whistle. With the regime put in place by Head Coach Dragan Djukic now taking shape, GB men battled for the full 60 minutes and fully deserved their victory. Afterwards, captain Ciaran Williams said: “This 2012
European Championship Qualification tournament is without doubt the most important tournament me and the current GB Men's squad have participated in. “I personally think that this is the best GB team we have ever had, and we have a superb chance of qualifying and sending a message out to the handball world that we are on track with our ultimate
Festival in Liverpool
GB Women Play World No 2 GREAT Britain women’s trademark strong defence helped them battle well against World Championship finalists France in Lille on Sunday, but the hosts proved too good and ran out 34-15 winners in their final Euro 2010 clash.
HANDBALL fans and players from across Europe came to England last weekend for the 10th Liverpool Handball Festival at the Greenbank Sports Academy. Several home teams did battle with rivals from Germany and Spain in competition for men and women as well as wheelchair handball, and all provided some thrilling entertainment. German outfit Magdeburg ran out winners of the men’s event, while last year’s champions Garva from Barcelona successfully defended their women’s title. And in the wheelchair competition there was a home win for Greenbank. After several good matches in the early stages, Ruislip Eagles reached the final and faced Spanish outfit Garva, but they lost out 5-2. In the men’s final Coslada lost out narrowly 9-10 to Magdeburg, while Greenbank beat the All Stars team 8-6 in the wheelchair final. Finally, in the plate final, Manchester beat Olympia B 6-4.
goal of being competitive come the London Olympics in 2012.” Day tickets include two matches, with the winner of the group at the end of the tournament going forward to the next stage of the competition against Hungary, Macedonia and Bosnia Herzegovina.
SOME of the best teams in English handball will be in Essex on Saturday as the Brentwood Centre stages the finals of the EHA Cup and plate competitions. Manchester take on Ruislip in the final of the men’s Cup, while women’s league champions Great Dane will do battle once again with arch rivals and former league champions Ruislip Eagles in the final of the Women’s Cup. And the men’s Plate final will also be decided in an action-packed day, with Cambridge taking on Manchester University in that final.
Head Coach Jesper Holmris was pleased with his team’s performance against a side who finished second in the World Championship and have easily topped the qualifying group. “France led 9-2 early in the game,” he said. “We looked nervous, but we soon got it together and played well for the rest of the half. We were only 16-8 behind at the break. “We started the second half well too, but once France changed to a more defensive formation we struggled to get past them as they’re the most physical team in the world. “I’m really proud of the team. We defended well, and Sarah Hargreaves had another great game in goal.” Left winger Holly Lam-Moores and left back Ewa Palies both played well and scored four goals each, while Britt Goodwin, Nina Heglund and Lyn Byl both scored twice.
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