PREVIEW: Over the coming weekend 27 teams vie for nine spots available to Europe at this summer's Women's Junior World Championship in Russia
European teams enter Women's Junior World Championship Qualification
The European qualification to the Women's Junior World Championship 2016 takes place from Friday to Sunday (20 March) with 27 teams vying for nine tickets available to the final tournament.
There are six groups of four teams each and one group of three teams. From Groups 1 and 3 the first two teams will qualify, while only the first-ranked team will qualify from the remaining five groups.
Denmark, Russia and Sweden, the teams that topped the podium at last year's Women's 19 EHF EURO, are already qualified, and so are Romania, the team that won the Women's Youth World Championship in 2014.
In Qualification Group 1 hosts Croatia face Norway, Greece and Switzerland.
"We hoped to end up in a group from which two teams qualify, and so we did," says Norway coach Tore Johannessen. "Croatia are tough opponents who have many good individual players. We do not know that much about Greece and Switzerland, but overall it should be a manageable group."
In Group 2 hosts Czech Republic play against Lithuania, Bulgaria and Germany; Group 3, from which two teams qualify, consists of Hungary, Belarus, Austria and hosts Iceland.
"I'm quite optimistic regarding the matches against Belarus and Iceland. However, facing Hungary will be an extremely tough task. They are definitely the favourites," says Austria head coach Helfried Müller.
In Group 4 Serbia welcome Portugal, the Netherlands and Bosnia-Herzegovina to Vrnjacka Banja. In Group 5 hosts France play against FYR Macedonia, Israel and Slovenia.
Group 6 consists of Spain, Turkey, Slovakia and Poland, while Montenegro, Ukraine and Georgia battle it out in Group 7.
TEXT: EHF / ts
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