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13.10.2014, 15:57
Hungary win Provident Cup, Netherlands prevail at Tunisian tournament
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REVIEW: Hungary, co-hosts of the Women’s EHF EURO 2014, have shown their strength on home court, winning the Provident Cup in confident fashion. Netherlands beat fellow EHF EURO participants Spain at a second four-nation event in Tunisia
 

Hungary win Provident Cup, Netherlands prevail at Tunisian tournament

Hungary’s women’s national team has produced an impressive performance at the Provident Cup the past weekend, proving that they are a true force to reckon with when they co-host the Women’s EHF EURO 2014 together with Croatia in December.

At the Provident Cup  in Szigetszentmiklós near Budapest the team of head coach Andras Nemeth won all its three matches, taking the overall victory in style.

Their first match was a 36:23 win against Austria on Friday, followed by show of dominance, resulting in a 46:23 against fellow EHF EURO participants Slovakia on Saturday, concluded with a 32:27 victory against Czech Republic on Sunday.

"I’m pleased that we won the tournament, I personally enjoyed the games.

"Having experienced players in the team will help us a lot, and I feel that step by step we are picking up our rhythm,” said 18-year-old back court player Gabriella Toth.

"It has been a long with the team, but still we didn’t have time for everything. In attack and defence there’s still room for improvement, in particular should we work on our 5:1-defence.”

For the second EHF EURO participants, Slovakia, the Provident Cup was more like a rollercoaster.

Following a 22:21 victory against Czech Republic, head coach Dusan Poloz’ team suffered the 23:46 defeat to Hungary and finished the tournament with a 31:31 draw against Austria.

"We showed some kind of resurrection following the loss against Hungary," Slovakia’s coach Dusan Poloz said. "However, our performances are not yet consistent enough. This must not happen to us at the European Championship."

Netherlands shine at Tunisian tournament

Several hundred kilometres further south EHF EURO 2014 participants Spain and Netherlands had travelled to Tunisia for a four-nation tournament with the African champions and Switzerland.

Netherlands, who return to the EHF EURO following a four-year absence, showed that they are already in good shape, winning all three matches including a 24:23 against Spain already on Thursday.

Spain beat Switzerland on Friday 33:23 while their third match against Tunisia was called off midway through the first half because of the court being too slippery which had already led to serious injury for one Tunisian player.

Dutch coach Henk Groener had put special emphasis on new defence tactics, practicing a 5:1-form in Tunisia.

"At the European Championship I want a second alternative next to our usual 6:0 defence. This is what we have been practicing and it gradually became better and better."

Despite only playing two and a half matches Spanish coach Jorge Duenas nevertheless saw some positive aspects.

"The week we spent together has helped some players to get more playing time. It has also helped us to remember our style of playing two months out of the European Championship," he said.

At the Women’s EHF EURO 2014 Spain face Hungary, Russia and Poland in Group A, while Netherlands play Germany, Sweden and Croatia in Group C.

Slovakia have been drawn to Group D alongside Serbia, Montenegro and France.


TEXT: EHF / ts
 
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