World Cup ticket in your pocket, Olympic dream in mind: Germany’s handball players have qualified for the World Cup in winter with another resounding victory.
The team of national coach Markus Gaugisch also won the playoff second leg against outsiders Greece clearly 36:20 (20:11) and thus secured one of 32 starting places in the finals in Denmark, Norway and Sweden (November 30th to December 17th) .
“The greatest goal of all was qualifying for the World Cup, which we managed with ease,” said Gaugisch: “Today we tried a lot in the 5-1 coverage, which was our focus. We got some new insights there. Forward the completion rate wasn’t as sharp as we would have liked.”
Xenia Smits (6) and Amelie Berger (5) were the best throwers for the selection of the German Handball Federation (DHB) in Chalkida in front of 80 spectators. In the first leg in Hamm, the DHB women had already made a preliminary decision on Easter Sunday with a 39:13.
Topic Olympics “very present”
Participation in the World Cup is also important with a view to a place at the Olympics, since the World Cup will be used to award tickets for the qualifying tournaments for Paris 2024. Germany was last represented with a women’s team in the Olympic handball tournament in Beijing in 2008.
The topic of the Olympics is “very present”, captain Emily Bölk confirmed before the game. The long-awaited leap into the medal games at the World Championships would guarantee participation in an Olympic qualifying tournament.
Despite the clear first leg, the Gaugisch team did not want to dismiss the game as meaningless, but continued to work on their own development. So Gaugisch again tested different coverage variants, which, however, revealed gaps.
Gaugisch sees room for improvement
On the other hand, Gaugisch’s players could hardly be stopped on the offensive. However, the Germans were a long way from the result of the record victory against Paraguay (45:12) in 2007. “Of course we have to keep working, Greece is inferior to us individually, that was clear beforehand,” said Gaugisch: “We are very satisfied in many areas, in some we have to do some work.”
The next international matches for the German women’s handball players are not until October as part of the European Championship qualification.