Twelve years after their first World Championship title, Norway wrote handball history in Sao Paulo. By beating the brave fighting French team 32:24 (19:13) in the final they are the second team after Denmark (1996/97) to be World Champion, European Champion and Olympic Champion at the same time, according to ihf.info.
For France it was the second consecutive defeat in a World Championship final after 2009, when they lost against Russia.
When the Gold medals were handed over by IHF President Dr Hassan Moustafa and Manoel Luiz Oliveira, President of the Brazilian Handball Federation, the Norwegians started to realize, what they had reached. On the top of the podium they continued their huge celebrations full of emotions, which had started with the final buzzer on the field – World Champion 2011!
Thorir Hergeirsson, coach Norway told ihf.info after the game: “The key to success were the development and the cooperation with experienced players like Kristine Lunde-Borgersen, who had given birth in February. (…) We knew before the final that, if we give four to five per cent more than in the semi, we have a chance to win. And the most important fact in the end was: The girls wanted to win, and if they want to win, you will win. It is great to have the three major titles now, as we are always playing to win. But right after Christmas we will start preparing for the Olympics.”
Romania’s opponents in Olympic Games qualifiers group
The Romanian women’s national handball team will play against France (world runner-up), Japan (Asian runner-up), Angola or Montenegro in the London Olympic Games qualifiers group, the International Handball Federation (IHF) informs, being quoted by Agerpres. The games will take place in France on May 25-27, 2012. In case Angola manages to keep its continental title, Romania will play against Montenegro in the pre-Olympic tournament.