The Netherlands put a dent in host nation Sweden’s bid to make the European Women’s Handball Championship semi-finals with a 33-30 win today.
Cornelia Groot found the net seven times from nine shots for the Dutch while her team-mate Estavana Polman scored six on their way to the victory on the opening day of the Main Round in Gothenburg’s Scandinavium Arena.
Sweden’s Isabelle Gullden was the Group One games’ top scorer with eight, but the home side found Tess Wester in fine form between the posts as she made 16 saves.
The Dutch coach Helle Thomsen used to have the same role with Sweden and knew how difficult today’s match would be, adding she will be hoping her former employers progress to the semis.
“It was a had game for us because Sweden played well and were supported by a lot of fans in the arena,” Thomsen said.
“It was a hard fight or us and the key to success was that we could run and score many goal by fast breaks.
“I will cross my fingers for the next match for Sweden.
“I am happy on that we won, but also I have some feeling for the Swedish Federation.”
Before the host nation took on The Netherlands, Germany defeated Serbia 26-19 in a solid team performance.
Today’s last match was a tight affair between Spain and France which the latter won 23-22.
At half time the Spanish were 14-10 ahead, but with a spirited second half performance from the French saw them turn around the deficit with Allison Pineau scoring nine goals, including the winner with just seconds remaining.
Tomorrow, the tournament travels to the Helsingborg Arena for the start of Group Two in the Main Round.
Opening the action will be reigning Olympic gold medallists Russia, who face the Czech Republic, before Hungary take on Romania.
Proceedings will be completed by a match between Denmark and Norway.