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11.02.2012, 00:12
"Still chances to reach EHF EURO"
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Polish goalkeeper Anna Baranowska believes in successful qualification for the continental event in The Netherlands.
 

"Still chances to reach EHF EURO"

The Polish National Team has started its EHF EURO 2012 campaign with two defeats, but despite the bad start goalkeeper Anna Baranowska is still confident that her side will recover and battle hard with Russia and Montenegro for the two qualification spots.

The SPR Lublin goalkeeper talked to ehf-euro.com in an exclusive interview about the upcoming matches against the group´s fourth team, Great Britain, the London Handball Cup, her sporting family background, and the reason why she decided to become a goalkeeper instead of an outfield player.

ehf-euro.com: Poland started the EHF EURO qualification with a clear loss against Russia followed by a close defeat against Montenegro. How do you remember those two games?

Anna Baranowska: From our point of view the games were not successful, as in the game against Russia, their goalkeeper, Maria Sidorova, stood like a rock between the posts and saved with over 60% efficiency.

Our home match against Montenegro was quite different. We were close to winning it, but had little luck. We were highly disappointed and very sad.

ehf-euro.com: Was such a bad start expected? What is the team´s goal for the upcoming four rounds? Do you still believe in EHF EURO qualification?

Anna Baranowska: Honestly, the draw didn´t favour us. Both, Russia and Montenegro are among the best 10 teams in the world and Great Britain is improving from month to month.

Our situation is not the easiest at the moment, but we aim to advance to The Netherlands. I know it´ll be a tough challenge, but we need to keep our heads up and give our best on the court.

ehf-euro.com: In March your next opponent will be Great Britain in a two-match duel. Are four points the objective in those games?

Anna Baranowska: The squad of Great Britain has been training together for several weeks in preparation for the 2012 Olympic Games in London, and therefore their constant improvement is visible from month to month. This gathering will soon bring its fruits. I expect that the games will be tough matches, as both National Teams need the points.

ehf-euro.com: You were part of the "London Handball Cup" which was the Olympic Handball test event. How was the tournament, and what are your memories?

Anna Baranowska: It was a pleasant trip to London. We were having lots of fun and named the tournament as our personal little Olympic Games

London is a beautiful city with marvelous architecture, and everywhere, very kind people. It was my first time there and I wish to return!

The tournament was highly-ranked with several classy teams, and we missed the final by a single goal defeat in the semi-final.

ehf-euro.com: With its new generation Poland are not so successful as in previous years, when the National Team played at EHF EURO´s. What is the reason for the decline, in your opinion, and what future lies ahead for Polish handball?

Anna Baranowska: It´s a very tough challenge to earn a spot at the EHF EURO, as it´s the toughest tournament in the world, and we were drawn with Russia and Montenegro, two world class teams.

We have a new and experienced trainer duo. Dane Kim Rasmussen has been our head coach for about eighteen months, and we are training hard for success. We need success for ourselves and for our discipline.

ehf-euro.com: Your goalkeeper coach is Antoni Parecki. How is the co-operation going with him?

Anna Baranowska: He is just amazing! In the beginning it was a bit difficult, as we both had different visions about goalkeeping and the method of training, but now I can confirm, we gel well together and he´s a real professional with lots of knowledge and experience!

We understand each other well and I´m very pleased with our co-operation so far. He brings only quality to the team.

ehf-euro.com: Your family has great roots in sports. Please tell us about your mum´s background as javelin thrower. Also, your sister is involved in handball, what made you both to decide on the sport of handball?

Anna Baranowska: My mother is Russian and she was a silver medalist in javelin throwing in the Soviet Union. Unfortunately she had to end her career due to an injury. Still, I´m very proud of her!

All the time she was involved in sports, I too, was always involved, and training at something. One day I decided to go for handball, as did my sister Aleksandra, and so we both became handball players. We are both very tall, and don´t like to run, so we both became goalkeepers!

Further Information

Find more information on the Women's EHF EURO 2012 Qualification HERE.

View more detailed information on the event on the Official EHF EURO 2012 Website.
www.ehf-euro.com/NED2012/

Join the growing community of fans of the event on Facebook!
www.facebook.com/NED2012


TEXT: Márk Hegedüs
 
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