Nine host venues for the 2017 World Men's Handball Championship in France have been selected.
The French Handball Federation (FFHB) has whittled down a long-list of more than 15 bids, to a final nine.
They are Aix en Provence, Albertville, Brest, Lille, Metz, Montpellier, Nantes, Paris and Rouen.
It will now be for the International Handball Federation to assess the suitability of the nine selected hosts.
The finalised list is due to be confirmed by the end of the year,
"The organisation of the World Championship of course has a sporting goal around the permanent support for the excellence of the French men's team," said FFHB President Joël Delplanque.
"But it must also, and this to me is equally important, be leveraged to further accelerate our development projects.
"The World Championship is in the service of French handball and its legacy is a major issue that must guide our actions."
France was awarded the Championship in December 2011 ahead of Denmark.
It has previously hosted the World Men's Handball Championship in 1970 and 2001, and the women's edition in 2007.
The next men's World Championship is in Qatar from January 15 to February 1 2015, with the dates for the 2017 tournament yet to be confirmed.
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