Sweden with signal of intent at women’s Olympic tournament
There were some surprises served up on Tuesday in the second round of matches in the women’s handball tournament at Tokyo 2020.
2012 finalists Montenegro fell at the hands of Japan, breathing life into the hosts’ chances of progressing from the preliminary round, while Norway and Netherlands maintained their perfect records in group A.
Brazil’s resurgence continued with a convincing victory over Hungary in group A, which is headed by Sweden after they displayed their gold medal credentials with a huge win against the Russian Olympic Committee.
Japan vs Montenegro 29:26 (14:13)
- hosts claim their first win of the tournament and their first win in the Olympics in 45 years
- a 5:1 run at the beginning of the second have proved decisive as Japan built on their narrow half-time lead and never looked back
- Sakura Kametani was the hero for Japan with a phenomenal 21 saves at 47%
South Korea vs Netherlands 36:43 (15:19)
- relentless attacking play from both sides resulted in an astonishing 79 goals, averaging a goal every 45 seconds
- every single court player scored at least two goals for the Dutch, led by Lois Abbingh with six, who make it two wins out of two
- Eun Hee Ryu led the scoring with 10 goals but it was not enough for South Korea, who now face a key clash against Japan on Thursday
Angola vs Norway 21:30 (10:15)
- four goals from Angola’s captain Isabel Guialo helped her side to an early 6:5 advantage
- it did not last long, however, as Norway let loose to claim a five-goal lead at the break
- it was a one-sided goalkeeper battle with Katrine Lunde producing 14 saves, 10 more than the Angolan pair
Brazil vs Hungary 33:27 (17:11)
- EHF Champions League regulars Samara Vieira, Eduarda Amorim and Ana-Paula Belo starred for Brazil and they claimed their first win of the campaign
- a solid second quarter from Brazil made all the difference as they raced into a six-goal lead at the break
- a second successive defeat leaves Hungary bottom of the group and in a race against time with three games remaining
Sweden vs ROC 36:24 (15:9)
- dark horses Sweden emerged as genuine medal contenders after a stunning 12-goal win over the Russian Olympic Committee
- after a controlled first half performance, Sweden were happy to let loose against the Russians in a high-scoring second half, with Carin Strömberg scoring eight and Jamina Roberts adding seven
- a misfiring Russian backcourt has left them in a sticky situation as they face a must-win match against Hungary on Thursday
France vs Spain 25:28 (12:12)
- Spain got their Olympic campaign on track with a composed second-half display against the 2016 silver medallists
- Carmen Martin stepped up big time in the final five minutes, scoring four goals and grabbing a steal for Spain
- France have yet to produce the defensive displays which has seen them thrive at international level in recent years
Detailed results and playing schedules are available on the official Olympics homepage.
All Tokyo 2020 photos courtesy of IHF.