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Handball: Before home world championship: Prokop takes second league player

Handball: Before home world championship: Prokop takes second league player


Handball: Before home world championship: Prokop takes second league player

European handball champion Martin Strobel (32) returns to the German national team shortly before the home world championship. The veteran and playmaker of the second division team HBW Balingen-Weilstetten has been appointed by national coach Christian Prokop to the 19-player squad for the European Championship qualifying matches against Israel (24 October in Wetzlar) and Kosovo (28 October in Pristina).

Prokop also nominated Tim Suton (22) and left-hander Franz Semper (21) for his international debut. The 2016 European Champions Steffen Fäth (Rhein-Neckar Löwen) and Kai Häfner (TSV Hannover-Burgdorf), on the other hand, are only reserves for the qualifying kick-off and the training course in Wetzlar.

“The now nominated players have certainly put themselves in position, but the move towards the home World Cup has not yet left anybody,” said Prokop. And Axel Kromer, Sports Director of the German Handball Federation (DHB), underlined: “Our squad for the tournament is forming up. This line-up is a clear indication of who is well on the way to the home World Championship.”

This also seems to be the Leipzig backspace player Niclas Pieczkowski, who was missing injured at Prokop’s tournament debut at the European Championship 2018 in Croatia at the beginning of the year. Like Suton, the young national player, and Strobel, the experienced player (135 international games), he is intended for game control. “Martin has a very good tactical perception, is good for the team and has a strong character,” said Prokop.

In the last two compulsory matches before the World Cup in January, the German handball team will play against Israel and Kosovo to ensure an optimal start to the European Championship qualification. The Group 1 programme will continue in April with two matches against Poland, the second against Israel and Kosovo in June. The first two teams of each of the eight groups as well as the best four third-placed teams will qualify for the European Championship 2020, which will take place in Austria, Norway and Sweden.

“We have two primary goals”, said Prokop: “On the one hand we want to successfully start the qualification for the EHF EURO 2020, on the other hand we want to prepare ourselves as a team further for the home world championship”. The teams from Israel and Kosovo are not at the top internationally, “but as outsiders they will do everything they can to surprise and challenge us. I expect us to be highly committed and fully focused.”

Andreas Wolff (THW Kiel), Silvio Heinevetter (Foxes Berlin), Dario Quenstedt (SC Magdeburg); Patrick Wiencek (THW Kiel), Hendrik Pekeler (THW Kiel), Steffen Weinhold (THW Kiel), Finn Lemke (MT Melsungen), Julius Kühn (MT Melsungen), Tobias Reichmann (MT Melsungen), Tim Suton (TBV Lemgo), Uwe Gensheimer (Paris St. Germain HB/FRA), Martin Strobel (HBW Balingen-Weilstetten), Jannik Kohlbacher (Rhein-Neckar Löwen), Patrick Groetzki (Rhein-Neckar Löwen), Fabian Böhm (TSV Hanover-Burgdorf), Fabian Wiede (Füchse Berlin), Matthias Musche (SC Magdeburg), Niclas Pieczkowski (SC DHfK Leipzig), Franz Semper (SC DHfK Leipzig)

Reserve: Marcel Schiller (Frisch Auf Göppingen), Steffen Fäth (Rhein-Neckar Löwen), Erik Schmidt (Füchse Berlin), Timo Kastening (TSV Hannover-Burgdorf), Kai Häfner (TSV Hannover-Burgdorf), Marian Michalczik (TSV GWD Minden)

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