Champions

Satish Sekar
By Satish Sekar May 10, 2015 16:12

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Champions

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by Satish Sekar © Satish Sekar (May 3rd 2015)

The Best

London GD Team 1

Although they all accept that British women’s handball has a long way to go to challenge countries like Spain – a country with some tradition in the sport, but which has fallen foul of the financial crisis – top-placed London GD (Great Dane) duly finished their league campaign with victory over NEM (North East Manchester) Hawks. It was a close match. GD won 22-20.

GD had won the Super8 League. The table hadn’t lied. Of the matches we covered as the season drew to a close GD were the class of the pack. They will contest the Cup Final too on May 16th.

London GD Celebrate

The Hawks took an early lead through Ellie Whitehead, but GD struck back quickly through Christina Rehnberg and an interception by Maria Teresa Perez Laguna resulted in a quick break that Claudia Schönbächler scored from. They never surrendered the lead again.

Misconceptions

Ulrike Altong led the scoring with seven goals, although British handball’s Olympic heroine Holly Lam-Moores scored six for NEM. Sophie Unsworth endured rotten luck in front of goal denied by saves or the woodwork. Quite how she only scored once – a rebound when Lucy-Anne Ready’s penalty was saved – remains a mystery.

Clattered

It was on occasion a brutal encounter. Nicola Quick’s foul on Rehnberg conceded not only a penalty, but a card. She knew it was coming and was running off the court before the card was even shown. Altong made no mistake. There were a few penalty throws – not unusual – in handball.

Defence

Occasionally the Hawks pulled to within a goal of GD, before Altong’s first penalty started a surge without reply until Rehnberg had put GD 10-5 up. That required a penalty throw conceded by Perez Laguna and converted by Ready. By then GD had already built up a cushion of five goals. It would reduce, but the Hawks never reached parity again, let alone regain the lead.

Lam-Moores opened the scoring in the second half, but the lead fluctuated between three and six. Whitehead brought NEM to within three with an excellent effort from a tight angle to bring the score to 16-13. She had no right to score from there.

NEM Celebrate

Schönbächler restored the lead to four thanks to a fumble by goalkeeper Kara Hunte. Lam-Moores scored an excellent break-away goal and the another to bring NEM to just two behind. GD restored their lead to four before Eliza Morgan and Emily Maddison scored for the Hawks. NEM fell just short.

The Rising Star
Lam-Moores is rightly seen as the rising star of British handball. She had developed her sills in Denmark and was poised to play in the Danish league – plans that fell through due to injury.

Holly Lam Moores 1
Despite the injury she played in London’s Olympic Games. The British team lost all their matches with a huge negative goal-difference, but many believe that the Olympic Games still had a legacy for handball.

NEM is part of that legacy. While champions GD has a team largely made up of European talent the Hawks, as Lam-Moores points out, are a team made up of English players. They are young and building on the lregacy of the Olympic Games. Despite the poor showing three years ago, handball is growing. It is the second most popular participation sport in Europe.

 NEM Team

It is growing fast.

 

Satish Sekar
By Satish Sekar May 10, 2015 16:12
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1 Comment

  1. Satish Sekar Author May 10, 16:15

    Our interview with Holy Lam-Moores will be available soon.

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