“Cancellation not on the agenda”: 39 cancellations threaten the Bundesliga season

“Cancellation not on the agenda”
39 cancellations threaten the Bundesliga season

The handball Bundesliga jumps from one rescheduling to the next – because corona cases and quarantine orders lead to numerous game cancellations. In order to end the season normally, the organization is already preparing alternative scenarios.

The corona pandemic thwarted the handball Bundesliga game plan again and again, but Frank Bohmann is far from giving up. “We don’t have a break on the agenda,” affirmed the league boss. The next game cancellation at the HBL headquarters in Cologne had just fluttered onto the table.

Meanwhile 39 games had to be postponed since the beginning of the “Corona season 2020/21”, just before the 26th matchday the game of HC Erlangen at TSV GWD Minden hit it. In Central Franconia, “only” three corona cases had not occurred, as initially assumed at the end of March, but “almost the entire team” had become infected. The club announced. “To be clear, it really hit us hard,” said Erlangen’s managing director Rene Selke: “Most of them couldn’t think of keeping fit, which is why this time has already set us back significantly. The first most important point was, of course, that first everyone had to get well again. “

In the meantime, part of the team has been released from quarantine, so so far there has been one change of date. But the next bad corona news from the league should only be a matter of time – Bohmann knows that too. “One thing is clear: the new virus variant significantly increases the risk – and with it the likelihood that an entire team will have to be quarantined quickly in the event of a case,” said the HBL boss in an interview with Sport1.

Tournament as an alternative?

If one of the five HBL teams around Champions League winner THW Kiel still represented in Europe is affected by isolation, the situation would be even more complicated. A total of six games have to be rescheduled, some teams have 17 (!) Games left.

The top of the league has therefore been dealing with alternative scenarios for a long time if they cannot get through the 38 game days as planned by the end of June. A final tournament like last year in basketball is a topic to condense the game plan towards the end. The organization in such a short time turns out to be difficult, quite apart from the dangers.

“If you go into detail, hosting such a tournament is associated with enormous risks,” said Bohmann. In view of the great logistical effort there are only “two or three conceivable locations, that would not work in a second division location, but rather in a metropolis,” explained the HBL boss. Bohmann is not afraid of a premature termination, as in the previous year, since there is “no political instruction” that we are no longer allowed to play. If not all games can be played to the end, sporting decisions would have to be made using the quotient rule.