Great Britain’s men have been drawn against Luxembourg, Ireland and Bulgaria for Qualification Phase 1 of the 2022 Men’s EHF European Championship. The Men’s EHF EURO is the elite senior continental championship for Europe’s national teams and will be played in Hungary and Slovakia in January 2022.
The first phase of qualification is set to take place in a tournament format from 4-6 January or 11-13 January 2019, with hosting rights for the games firstly with Bulgaria, then Ireland, GB and Luxembourg with the location of the games to be confirmed shortly.
GB’s last participation in a EURO qualifier goes back to October 2012, just after the London Olympics, and their entry this time is part of the ongoing British Handball elite development programme and is primarily self-funded.
It is a case of déjà-vu for GB who last played Luxembourg and Ireland at the 2017 IHF/EHF Emerging Nations Trophy in Gabrovo, Bulgaria. On that occasion GB lost 37:30 to Luxembourg, but beat Ireland 39:26. The last meeting between GB and Bulgaria was in June 2010 at Crystal Palace in another EHF EURO qualifier, when GB recorded a famous 33:32 last seconds win.
Commenting on the draw, GB head coach Ricardo Vasconcelos said “This is a tough draw for our young team, but will be a good learning experience. Luxembourg and Bulgaria have been making great progress in recent years and will be difficult opponents, while Ireland can be an awkward foe”.