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31.10.2013, 10:28
Erevik regards Golden League as perfect preparation for EHF EURO
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INTERVIEW: Norway´s experienced goalkeeper is looking forward to the final tournament that will take him to a very familiar court
 

Erevik regards Golden League as perfect preparation for EHF EURO

When the Norwegian Handball Federation hosts the first edition of the Men's Golden League in the Telenor Arena in Oslo the weekend coming (1 to 3 November), it will be the first time since early summer that the Norwegian national team is together again.

The Golden League on home court against France, Denmark and Croatia as well as the next edition in France (4 to 6 January) at the beginning of January will be the preparation tournaments the Norwegians play ahead of the EHF EURO 2014 in Denmark in January.

Considering the opposition, the Norwegians are facing in those two warm-up tournaments, they will offer Norway excellent conditions to prepare , says Norway's experienced goalkeeper Ole Erevik who plays for the Danish national champions Aalborg Handbold.

The 32-year-old will be on home court in Norway's preliminary matches which are taking place in Aalborg's Gigantium Arena where Aalborg Handbold are also playing their home matches.

The arena will be the venue of Group B in which Norway face Spain, Hungary and Iceland.

ehf-euro.com: What is it like to be in a training camp with the Norwegian national team after having been apart for so long?
Ole Erevik: It is great to see the teammates again, many of whom I don't see every day, and it is fine to get the opportunity to train together again and to get the systems refreshed.

ehf-euro.com: What will it be like for you to play the first Golden League on home court?
Ole Erevik: Of course, it is great to be playing at home and to get the chance to present such great teams to the Norwegian handball spectators.

However, even though we play at home, I do not think we should expect to win the tournament, as our opponents, Denmark, France and Croatia are probably all among the three or four best teams in the world right now, and we are not, so we should probably be happy just to learn from the tournament.

ehf-euro.com: You say learning – what exactly do you expect that tournament to give your team in terms of preparing for the EHF EURO 2014?
Ole Erevik: I think it will give us a very precise picture of where we stand right now, and I also think it will sharpen us a lot as a team to be up against so strong opponents.

ehf-euro.com: This Golden League and the Golden League in France just after New Year will be your only preparations ahead of the EURO. Is that enough?
Ole Erevik: Yes, I think it is, again considering the quality of our opponents. In France, we will be meeting Denmark and France again, and Qatar too, and we are probably only favourites against Qatar.

Therefore, we will probably not come to the EHF EURO with a lot of wins in our bag, but with a lot of experience instead.

ehf-euro.com: Where do you think your team stands at the moment?
Ole Erevik: The ongoing problem in Norwegian men's handball is the lack of top players. We do not have a couple of billions player to choose from, but I think we have an OK team, although we are probably not in the top six in the world.

ehf-euro.com: Actually, you will also be on home court for the preliminary round of the EHF EURO, as your group takes place at the Gigantium Arena in Aalborg, where your club also plays it home matches. What will that be like for you?
Ole Erevik: Of course, it is fun to be playing in Aalborg, and considering the fact that we have a baby arriving only around three weeks after the championship, it is reassuring not to be too far away at that time.

However, when the games start, I do not expect to be thinking all that much about where it is taking place.

ehf-euro.com: If you had to predict the Norwegian chances at the EHF EURO 2014 already, what would you say?
Ole Erevik: We are obviously not favourites, and we are in an extremely strong group, with Spain, Hungary and Iceland.

All those nations are opponents, against whom we often had pretty poor results in the past, but of course I hope that we can advance from the group, and from then on we will simply have to see.

The Norwegian squad for the Golden League in Norway:

Goalkeepers: Ole Erevik (Aalborg Handbold) Espen Christensen (Lugi HF) Magnus Dahl (HSG Wetzlar)

Field players: Bjarte Myrhol (Rhein-Neckar Löwen) Magnus Gullerud (Sønderjyke) Havard Tvedten (Aalborg Handbold) Andre Lindboe (Elverum Handball) Erlend Mamelund (Haslum HK) Espen Lie Hansen (Dunkerque HB Grand Littoral) Kristian Kjelling (Bjerringbro-Silkeborg) Christian O´Sullivan (BSK) Børge Lund (Bodø HK) Johannes Hippe (Lugi HF) Christoffer Rambo (Dunkerque HB Grand Littoral) Kent Robin Tønnesen (HSG Wetzlar) Harald Reinkind (FyllingenBergen) Kristian Bjørnsen (FyllingenBergen) Steffen Berg Løkkebø (TV Emsdetten) Sander Sagosen (Haslum HK)


TEXT: Peter Bruun / ts
 
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