Festive cheer from England Handball
England Handball has been spreading good cheer about the good game of handball via the medium of twitterbook. Given that UK Sport are soon to announce the results of their ‘no compromise’ approach to funding the international game (I think we can see how that will pan out) and Sport England are soon to release details of their participation approach to funding (a bit less clear), let’s have a look at the headline figures England Handball have been putting out:
- For the first time in the history of handball there are more than 1,000 registered handball players in England
- Once registrations are complete there will have been an 86% increase in the number of handball clubs in England since the Olympics
- Participation amongst schools at under 15 level is up 39%
These figures obviously exclude Scotland and there have also been positive tweets and the like from Ireland (but as I know nothing about the situation there I’ll refrain from commenting).
The hard work for a handball legacy is now under way.
For more information about England Handball see here.
Apart from the funding issues all excellent news. If you are looking for inspiration for festive cheer/Christmas gifts for your handball loving friend, try some of the items from the official bundesliga shop http://shop.dkb-handball-bundesliga.de/
Unfortunately you have to go to the German language part of the site, for those whose German is rusty or non existent, Google has an excellent tool called Google translate. I was particularly taken by the computer game
http://shop.dkb-handball-bundesliga.de/bsd-ihf-handball-challenge-12/1106.html which allows you to try and win the Bundesliga or Liga ASOBAL or step into the shoes of Filip Jicha or Nikola Karabatic to try and win the Mens World Championship. As this was produced prior to the last World Cup in Sweden, it preceded the Montpellier scandal. Presumably you do get to see the French superstar play, rather than looking on glumly as a spectator whilst he awaits the outcome of the inquiry into his girlfriend’s alleged gambling.
Other gifts to consider would be some tickets to see top class handball. A winter escape to Spain is always pleasant, but combined with a trip to the Mens World Championship it sounds unbeatable. http://handball2013.net/index.asp?locale=en_US
Unbeatable was the word that until recently described THW Kiel, however they are still almost certain to be at the Bundesliga Final Four in Hamburg on 13th and 14th April. The Lions found prowling the banks of the Rhein and Neckar rivers are likely to be chasing the Zebras for silverware along with A.N.Other times two. Tickets for this spectacular handball feast can be found here. http://www.eventimsports.de/shop/222/33529/allareas
The Bundesliga Final Four is not to be confused with an other tournament bearing a similar name, which is of course played in Cologne and where a non-German side does have a theoretical chance of lifting the trophy