The Dutch handball players reached the semi-finals of the World Cup in Japan on Wednesday. The Dutch team convincingly won against South Korea (40-33) and definitively joined the last four countries by a victory from Norway over Germany.
The Netherlands itself had to beat South Korea, but due to the Denmark-Serbia tie (26-26) it was dependent on the match between Germany and Norway. In a draw, the team of national coach Emmanuel Mayonnade was eliminated, but Norway won 32-29.
In the semi-finals, the Netherlands will face Russia on Friday, the winner of the other group. Vice world champion Norway, who finished first in the group with the Netherlands, is waiting for a place in the final battle with Spain.
The Orange squad started the main round with defeats against Germany (Sunday) and Denmark (Monday), but remained in the race for the semi-finals thanks to the points taken from the first group stage and favorable results in other fields and won from South earlier on Wednesday. Korea.
Lois Abbingh, who played her 150th international match, was worth no less than eleven goals for the Netherlands and was named player of the game. Estavana Polman (seven goals), Angela Malestein and Martine Smeets (both six hits) were also shot at the Aqua Dome in Kumamoto.
National coach Emmanuel Mayonnade decided against South Korea for the first time to get this Delaila Amega tournament in the game selection. The input of the 22-year-old talent, who is back from a serious cruciate ligament injury, was at the expense of Inger Smits.
Final position Group I
- 1. Norway 5-8 (+18)
- 2. The Netherlands 5-6 (+17)
- 3. Serbia 5-5 (-12)
- 4. Germany 5-5 (-1)
- 5. Denmark 5-4 (-1)
- 6. South Korea 5-2 (-21)
The joy with the Dutch handball players is great. (Photo: Pro Shots)
The Orange runs fast away from South Korea
While the Netherlands had difficulty scoring in the last two duels, the Mayonnade team fared much better against South Korea, which had already been eliminated. Within no time it was 3-0 and after a little more than ten minutes, thanks to Abbingh, the Netherlands was already ahead with six points (8-2).
The South Koreans, known for their speed in the front, had little objection to this and were not particularly effective. The Netherlands encountered a lot less resistance from an offensive perspective than against Germany and Denmark and ran to a lead of ten goals difference.
That margin was somewhat reduced at the end of the first half (it was 23-16 halfway) and the first two goals after halftime also went to South Korea, which benefited from the sometimes sloppy game at the Orange. The Netherlands recovered and went back to 28-18 thanks to four goals in a row.
Despite a third time penalty by Kelly Dulfer, who was therefore no longer allowed to play, the Dutch team remained relatively simple against South Korea and the team remains in the race to make it to the podium - just like in the last two World Cups.
See also: Results and program for the Netherlands at World Cup handball in Japan
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