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04.06.2012, 00:10
World Handball Players honoured
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European stars, Löke and Hansen, honoured by International Handball Federation
 

World Handball Players honoured

The second leg of the Danish League final AG Kobenhavn vs. Bjerringbro Silkeborg in Herning was the venue for the awarding ceremony for the new World Handball Players of the Year, Heidi Löke (Norway) and Mikkel Hansen (Denmark).

The awards were presented by IHF President Dr Hassan Moustafa and Per Bertelsen, President of the Danish Handball Federation to the two stars of European handball.

Pivot Heidi Löke is the third Norwegian in five years (and the fourth in total) to be awarded with this title, whilst left back Mikkel Hansen is the first ever male Dane to be honoured with this award, which is handed over since 1988.

Löke, playing for Hungarian club side Audi ETO Györ since this season, received 31 percent of all votes and was ahead of Allison Pineau (France/22%), who had been awarded with this title 2009, her Norwegian national team and club team mate Katrine Lunde Haraldsen (20%), Serbian Andrea Lekic (18%) and Andrea Penezic (Croatia/12 %)

The advance of Hansen, was a little bigger: He received 31 percent of all votes and finished 10 percent of his forerunner Filip Jicha (Czech Republic 21 %), and the French trio Nikola Karabatic (19 %), Luc Abalo (19 %) and Thierry Omeyer (10 %).

Profile - Heidi Löke

Löke (29) won the EHF Champions League in 2011 with her former club Larvik HK, was top scorer of the competition and also won the Norwegian cup, league and was the top goal scorer in the Norwegian league for the third time.

She then changed to the Hungarian club Audi ETO Györ – and in December Löke was one major key for the Norwegian national team, which became World Champion in Brazil for the second time in their history.

She was awarded as best line player in the All-Star-Team. And in May 2012 she played in the EHF Champions League final again, but this time she lost with Györ against Buducnost Podgorica.

Profile - Mikkel Hansen

Mikkel Hansen (24), nicknamed “the hammer” is the biggest star in Danish handball – and his star has been in the ascendancy since 2011.

After two years in Barcelona (including being a finalist in the EHF Champions League) he returned to AG Kobenhavn in 2010, winning both the Danish championship and cup in 2011 and 2012.

He led AGK to the VELUX EHF FINAL4 2012 in Cologne, where the Danes finished third in their first ever appearance in the “king’s class”.

But his biggest competitions were those with the national team. He was the key for the Danish silver medal at the World Championship 2011 in Sweden, where Hansen became top scorer with 68 goals and member of the All-Star-Team.

In January 2012 Hansen was the key for the second Danish EHF European Championship title – scoring nine goals in the final against hosts Serbia meant the Gold medal, and again Hansen was elected to the tournament's All-Star-Team.


TEXT: Björn Pazen
 
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