World Cup in Denmark: Handball players are in the quarter-finals: “Great things achieved”

The German handball players celebrated their quarter-finals at the World Cup in Scandinavia to Tina Turner's party classic "Simply the Best".

World Cup in Denmark: Handball players are in the quarter-finals: “Great things achieved”

The German handball players celebrated their quarter-finals at the World Cup in Scandinavia to Tina Turner's party classic "Simply the Best".

Thanks to a significant increase in performance, the DHB selection continued its impressive run of success against Serbia and secured a ticket for one of the Olympic qualifying tournaments in the spring with a 31:21 (14:13). In the long, hard-fought game, Antje Döll was the best German thrower with five goals.

"We achieved something really big. The girls stayed calm and turned things around in the second half," praised national coach Markus Gaugisch and spared criticism: "There won't be a 'but' coming out of my mouth today. We rocked it together and Achieved great things."

The winners jump arm in arm across the parquet. Then co-captain Emily Bölk started a La Ola in front of the German fan block after her 100th international match.

Highlight game against Denmark

At the end of the preliminary round, the German national team will face title candidate and co-host Denmark in Herning on Monday. “This is a highlight game that we deserve. We want to do everything we can,” announced Gaugisch. In the quarterfinals there could be a manageable duel with Sweden, Hungary or Montenegro.

The round of the best eight was the minimum for the German squad. The last World Cup medal was 16 years ago - in 2007 the DHB selection won bronze. The performance against Serbia initially gave only limited hope for another medal.

German defense has to be patient

Gaugisch had not expected “any handball treat” and the national coach was right. 5,000 spectators saw what was expected to be a disgusting game in which the Serbians slowed down and played out their attacks for a very long time. The bottom of the group hardly counterattacked at all. The German defenders around Meike Schmelzer had to be patient.

The defense was compact, but once again the DHB team showed weaknesses in their attacking game. Without playmaker Alina Grijseels (thigh bruise), Germany made too many missed throws in the first few minutes. Gaugisch complained on the sidelines and took the first timeout after 15 minutes. “Full throttle,” the 49-year-old demanded loudly when the score was 5:7.

A prominent guest

The speech worked. Bölk and Maren Weigel turned the game around with powerful throws from the backcourt. Before the eyes of former national coach Henk Groener, the German offensive remained prone to mistakes and left too many promising opportunities unused. The quick game didn't work.

The intensive video analysis during the break initially did not bring the desired result. The German squad allowed themselves to be lulled by their opponents and found no gaps in the Serbian defense. Five minutes had been played in the second half and Germany was still waiting for their first goal.

The fact that the outsider now acted too impetuously and committed several fouls suited the DHB team. With a double majority, Germany turned the game around again and took the lead with five goals for the first time 15 minutes before the end (21:16). The Serbian resistance was broken and Germany extended its lead.

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