- The Swiss handball players create history: The national team qualifies for the first time for a European Championship finals.
- Martin Albertsen’s team also wins the 2nd qualifier against Lithuania.
- A clear 34:18 victory resulted in Gümligen.
The Swiss women are going to a major event for the first time. Thanks to the 2nd victory within 4 days against Lithuania, the national handball team qualifies for the European Championships in November 2022 in Slovenia, North Macedonia and Montenegro. The cheering in the well-filled hall in Gümligen was huge, the Swiss women had never been to a major event before.
As in the 36:30 victory on Thursday in Lithuania, the second qualifying game against the Eastern Europeans was still balanced in the first half. For a long time no team was able to pull away with more than 2 goals, only in the 26th minute did Martin Albertsen’s team score 11:8.
Show running after the break
As a result, match winner Kerstin Kündig (12 goals in total) increased her 5th goal to 12:8, which is worth seeing, but the skilful Lithuanians came back to 10:12 by the time the break siren sounded.
In front of their home crowd, the Swiss women were able to turn things up a notch in the second half. Still sovereign on the defensive and with Manuela Brütsch (defense rate of 70 percent) outstanding in the final phase between the posts, more was also possible in attack and the balls found their way past the Lithuanian goalkeeper much more easily.
Especially in the last 20 minutes the guests didn’t know what to do with the hustle and bustle in Switzerland. Within 12 hand revolutions, Kündig and Co. increased their time from 18:15 to 29:16. In addition to the top scorer, the only 17-year-old Mia Emmenegger stood out with a total of 8 goals, the winger also repeatedly ran successfully to counter-attacks.
Although the last European Championship qualifying game against Poland is still scheduled for April, Switzerland can no longer be pushed out of second place.
Group opponents Russia had been excluded from the European Handball Federation (EHF) as a result of the invasion of Ukraine. There the outstanding Swiss game against the Russians was assessed as a forfait victory, the national team with the Lithuanians has now put the last remaining competitors (Poland is already the group winner) in their place.