Quite a lot has now been decided but there are still places up for grabs – four teams from each group progress to the knock out stages, the rest go into the President’s Cup ranking tournament. As ever, should you wish to see these games in the UK you’ll either need to go to livehandball.tv and pay a subscription or deposit some money in a Bet365 account. Neither comes with commentary so invest in Spotify and create your own sporting soundtrack. Anyway, here’s today’s preview:
The first match in Group C in Zaragoza at 2.45pm sees Slovenia who have three from three take on Belarus who have the tournament’s top scorer. I’d back the Slovenians to maintain their 100% record – a result which may not harm Belarus’s qualification chances as they still have to face Saudi Arabia having already beaten South Korea. At 5pm it actually is the match between Saudi and South Korea, the group’s bottom two sides. The Koreans have at least been close to their opponents for long stretches whereas Saudi haven’t managed quite so well. A win for South Korea is most likely. Lastly, at 7.15pm, it’s time to set volumes to 11 as Poland play the 100% Serbs. Poland have a mean defence and both teams can play it tough – so expect a bruising match that Serbia should edge.
Over in Group D, Algeria will be looking to beat Australia by a huge margin at 3.45pm. Following their draw both Algeria and Egypt have to play the Oceania minnows and with goals scored and goal difference being a potential decider on qualification for the knock out stage neither side will want to go easy. At 6pm, Hungary, who were disappointing against Croatia last time out, play Spain who have won every match and already qualified. The hosts should win again to keep the people of Madrid happy. Lastly, at 8.15pm, and similarly qualified with three wins, Croatia face Egypt. Assuming a full-strength team Croatia should have enough to win comfortably but if they rest a few or ease a little then the Egyptians could make it interesting.