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08.03.2013, 13:18
Norway preparing for a new challenge
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The EHF EURO 2012 silver medallists will begin preparation for their first qualifiers in 11 years with the Golden League in France
 

Norway preparing for a new challenge

Norway’s women are used to direct qualification for major tournaments, with the majority of the squad never having to play a World Championship or EHF EURO qualifier.

In fact, Katrine Lunde Haraldsen is the one current squad member who played in a tournament that Norway had to qualify for, 11 years ago.

With Norway starting the qualification campaign for the EHF EURO 2014 this autumn, a new preparation schedule is required.

However, their silver medal at the EHF EURO 2012 gives them direct qualification for the World Championship in December and more time to experiment with friendly matches.

“Having to play qualification matches for the first time since 2002 means that we have quite a lot of internationals this spring,” national coach Thorir Hergeirsson told eurohandball.com after having announced his squad for the Golden League in France from 20 to 23 March. Here, Norway will meet Denmark, Russian and the hosts.

“After the Golden League we play Korea in April, we have the Scandinavian Open in May, and then we meet Iceland in June.

”At the moment, we take the opportunity to take a closer look at some new and talented young players, and we also work on implementing some of our young players in more central roles in the team, than they have had before.

“In recent years we have lost some of our tall players, and that is a problem in our central defence, when we practice the 6-0 defence. Therefore, you will probably see us with more offensive defence formations in future, where we will also strive to get a better fast break phase,” explained Hergeirsson, who is resting several high profile players for the tournament in France.

Even though he had to see his team being dethroned by Montenegro in the final of the EHF EURO 2012, the Norwegian coach is not particularly disappointed when looking back at the days in Serbia.

“It goes without saying that you are never happy to lose a final, but that being said, I am very content with the way the new and relatively young team we sent to Serbia performed,” concluded Hergeirsson.

Norwegian squad for the Golden League in France, 20 to 23 March:

Goalkeepers:
Silje Solberg (Stabæk Håndball) Katrine Lunde Haraldsen (Györi Audi ETO)

Back court payers: Mari Molid (Levanger HK) Stine Bredal Oftedal (Stabæk Håndball) Id Alstad (Byåsen Elite) Anja Edin (Larvik HK) Ida Bjørndalen (KIF Vejen) Linn Jørum Sulland (Larvik HK) Veronica Kristiansen (Glassverket IF) Betina Riegelhuth (only if free of injury) (Storhamar IF)

Wingers: Linn Kristin Riegelhuth (Larvik HK) Amanda Kurtovic (Viborg HK) Linn Gossé (Tertnes Elite) Sanna Solberg (Stabæk Håndball)

Line players: Heidi Løke (Györi Audi ETO) Marit Malm Frafjord (Viborg HK)


TEXT: Peter Bruun / cor
 
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