News archive, Ultimo 2000:
Denmark - Germany: 21 - 22 (13-10)
Denmark: Mette Vestergaard Larsen 5, Rikke Skov 5 Hørlykke 3, Majken Larsen 2, Louise Pedersen 1, Christina Roslyng Hansen 1, Merethe Hansen 1, Pernille Hansen 1, Anja Nielsen 1, Winnie Mølgaard 1
Germany: Kathrin Blacha 5, Heike Schmidt 5, Franziska Heinz 4, Ingrida Radzeviciute 2, Anika Schafferus 2, Melanie Schliecker 2, Agnieszka Tobiasz 2
Lotte Kiærskou was not playing in the last match Friday, due to an injury.
Denmark - Rumania: 26 - 33 (13-18)
Denmark: Lene Rantala, Karin Mortensen - Majken Larsen 3, Mette
Vestergaard 9 (2), Pernille Jørgensen 2, Pernille Hansen, Rikke Hørlykke
1, Anja Nielsen 4, Lotte Kiærskou 1 (1), Winnie Mølgaard 1, Rikke Skov 1,
Line Daugaard 4.
Forget about medals, a ticket to the world championship, about honour and glory. Just forget it! As I have absolutely nothing positive to say about the lame performance of the Danish national team (not deserving that title) against Norway, I will say no more!
Denmark - Norway: 22 - 29 (16-12)
Denmark: Lotte Kiærskou 6 (5), Christina Roslyng 5, Mette Vestergaard
5, Pernille Hansen 3, Rikke Skov 1, Rikke Hørlykke 1, Pernille Jørgensen
As I have not been at home during the first three Danish matches, I will not elaborate much on them.
Denmark - Belarus: 34 - 26 (20-17)
Denmark: Louise Pedersen 10, Lotte Kiærskou 9 (2), Mette Vestergaard 6,
Majken Larsen 3, Pernille Jørgensen 3, Pernille Hansen 2, Line Daugaard 1.
Commentator on Danish TV, former national team coach Urik Wilbek, said he had never in his career seen such incompetent referees - they had no idea what they were doing, knew little of the rules and clearly favoured Belarus. We are not the only team experiencing horrible referees.
Ukraine - Denmark 29 - 29 (15-13)
Denmark: Mette Vestergaard 9 (3), Lotte Kjærskou 8 (2), Anja Nielsen 4, Pernille Hansen 3, Pernille Jørgensen 2, Line Daugaard 2, Rikke Hørlykke 1.
Ukraine: Llilija Stolpakova 8( 3), Maryna Verhelyuk 7(3), Olena Radchenko 4, Tetyana Salogub 4, Hanna Siukalo 3, Olena Reznir 2, Halyna Markushevska 1.
Denmark - Macedonia: 19 - 20 (9-5)
Denmark: Lotte Kiærskou 8 (1), Rikke Skov 4, Line Daugaard 4, Christina
Roslyng 1, Mette Vestergaard 1, Christina Roslyng 1, Anja Nielsen 1.
On the way to Rumania, the debutant Anette Olesen did what no one has done before - she got homesick and left the train even before the train left Denmark - and she will not return! Instead Pytlick called in Merethe Hansen from Viborg (eight national matches). Fortunately she managed to get all the way to Rumania. See also profiles of players on TV2 and on my players list.
Remember to have a look at my Olympic page
Jolly Cup initiates the new national team
Denmark - Rumania 35-20 (20-9)
Denmark - France: 21- 22
Denmark - Holland 29-23 (12-11)
The first match in Jolly Cup (the only matches for the new team to find the rhytm before the EC) opposed a well-known Dutch team. Not only known from the Championships but also from the national league, as five of the Dutch national players on a daily basis play for Danish GOG and their goalkeeper plays for Anja's team Slagelse. At first the Danish team was unable to make use of the chances they got. Close to the half-time Rantala and Lotte took care of changing that bad habit and in the second half, the Danes showed very promising play. Lotte and the 28-year old debutante Majken Larsen from Viborg were top scorers with five goals each. Today they will meet France, which will be a tough physical struggle which leaves many black marks on the more "civilized" Danes.
The 16 players for EC and Jolly Cup
Lene Rantala, Larvik, Karin Mortensen, Horsens, Rikke Petersen, Kolding, Louise Pedersen, Horsens, Majken Larsen, Viborg, Mette Vestergaard Larsen, FIF, Pernille Jørgensen, Horsens, Christina Roslyng Hansen, Viborg, Anette Olesen, Kolding, Pernille Hansen, GOG, Rikke Hørlykke B. Jørgensen, FIF, Anja Nielsen, Ikast/Bording, Lotte Kiærskou, Frederikshavn, Winnie Mølgaard, El Ferrobus Mislata, Rikke Skov, Viborg, og Line Daugaard, Brabrand.
Substitutes: Sara Hansen, Ikast/Bording, and Mette Melgaard, Brabrand.
Mette Vestergaard will be the new team captain after Tonje.(Ritzau)
More weakened European Championship team
Now Karen Brødsgaard has been told, she'd better stay at home during the European Championship in order to nurse her knee injury. Also Helle Simonsen, whom we have not seen in a long time but was supposted to be ready now, has got yet another injury and won't be going. Is this a team or an emergency site?
The end of the gold team shocks the nation
We had expected that some of the players would leave the national team after the Olympics, for example Tina Bøttzau and that one or two would wish not to participate in the European Championship and then return, for example Tonje Kjærgaard who has studies to attend. We also were prepared to the fact that some players were leaving after the European Championship. But we were not prepared to this shocking rush for the exit door, which has left the gold team in ruins and severely damaging the expected transition from the "elder team" to a new generation. Whatever their reasons are: we simply can't believe it!! What is happening here? (and a lot of swear words which Anja used to shout, showing a certain finger)
See it illustrated on this image from just a few weeks ago, the gold team that could go on forever and ever, just beginning their new era... so we thought.
The new team- the brutto team from which 16 will be chosen
for the European Championship
Lene Rantala, Larvik (Thank God!! or this site would have closed
Trainer Pytlick is left with an impossible task. He has this to say
about the causes of this destruction of his team: "There should not be
championships every single year. It wears down the players too much, and
they hardly ever have a break." (Dagbladet, 19. okt 2000)
This development leaves some very urgent questions for Danish handball - why did this happen? (Some say too many matches due to demands for profit and therefore players worn down at a young age - and then the entire matter of the press not knowing about limits or ethics). And what is the future for the new national team in the years to come? Are the young players good enough? (many say they are not) and what is the reason? (it has been mentionned that the Danish league teams "import" way too many foreign players on the team, leaving no space for young Danish talents - there are up to 44 foreing players in the league at the moment, also some who could easily be replaced by natives). Many years will pass untill we - if we are lucky - get a level just close to the one of the team just broken up. Foreign teams will have an easy way to medals now that both Denmark and Norway are left shattered (also many of their players quit).
Mia Hundvin not to European Championship
The Norwegian national team player Mia Hundvin has told her trainer Marik Breivik that she will not participate in the coming European Championship. Maybe she will not play for the national team at all, she has not decided that yet. Her decision makes us Danes worry about Camilla Andersen's answer: tomorrow she will declare wether she will continue on the Danish national team. Their decisions will influence each other for sure. But Mia has her studies in Denmark to take care of and her disappointment about the Olympic bronze have of course also something to do with it. Stay, Camilla, stay! We order you, no no, we beg you!!
Norway also is threatened by players who may not play for the national team any longer or at least not in the European Championship: Cecilie Leganger, Tonje Larsen, Susann Goksør, Trine Haltvik, Heidi Tjugum and Ann Cathrin Eriksen.
Miracles do happen: OLYMPIC GOLD!
Denmark - Hungary in the finals: 31-27 (14-16)
This was as thrilling as the finals in 96. Just as back then, we ended
up believing that the match was lost and yet in the last moment, angels
intervened and brought the victory. Denmark started out well with 5-2
after five minutes. The wings lived up to their election to the All-Star
team and their veteran experience. The game was extremely fast, all had no
time to waste. Farkas and Rantala in their respective goals were great.
In the second half Hungary still leads, Camilla scores yet another of
her penalty shots to 15-17 and then Fruelund to 16-18, fearless with
her shots from the distance.
Sensation: Denmark will go for gold in the finals
What we never thought possible when the Danish team left for Australia some weeks ago: A victory over Korea and fighting for the gold medals in the finals! Never has the team played better now that they had achieved what they had set out to do (being in the semifinals) and with all the motivation and self-esteem gained in yesterday's victory over France - a much longed for revenge. The scoring rate was as high as 80 percent and no one got through the defence, having learned how the Koreans usually trick the defense to open up. Only the referees were a bit too Korean friendly in the second half.
Denmark-South Korea 31-29 (20-11).
Denmark: Anette Hoffmann 8, Katrine Fruelund 6, Camilla Andersen 6 (4),
Janne Kolling 5, Mette Vestergaard 2, Lotte Kiærskou 2, Tonje Kjærgaard
We are fighting in unity, we are fighting with the heart, coach Jan Pytlick expressed after the match, which had lifted the previous pressure from the players, whom no one had expected to get further than a fifth place.
Quoting Jan Pytlick from the Sydney Morning Herald article:
That day, the team not only played the best match they have ever done, but also played better than the "old team", that won the Olympics in 96 - against just Korea. That was what former coach Ulrik Wilbek felt and many other handball experts with him .We do not have individualists like Anja anymore to win us the gold, but the team plays more like a group sharing the responsability. Just like back then, the Danes left the court in wild joy and the Koreans left crying, facing God knows what kind of punishment off court.
Somehow the self-esteem gained the previous day by beating France and thus getting the longed for revenge plus the fact that they had reached their goal of a semifinal made the girls play much more freely without any of the blackouts of previous matches. The first half was an example of how perfect handball should be played, everything was just like a dream. Especially Olympic veterans Janne Kolling and Anette Hoffmann on the wings were the big heroines and also Fruelund had her big day. Camilla Andersen, who had been a bit of a disappointment during the tournament all the way up to the match agains France, woke up again when it really mattered (as she always does when the opponent is worth it, now it was fun) and carried us through our only crisis in the second half, where Korea got as close as 3 goals to us, just as she got us through yesterdays crisis against France. Her penalty shots always get through! Camilla is playmaker and the same eight players are on court during the match, with no real alternatives on the bench. Lotte was the driving force in the contra play. Pytlick made a good time-out when Korea during seven minutes had scored seven times compared to one Danish goal, getting up to 18-21.
As usual the Koreans are scary in their fast playing style with many technical systems beaten into their heads with military precision, but just that style is also their weakness: they are highly trained robots (up to 8 hours a day) who cannot think for themselves and be spontanious, team members who face severe punishment if not winning (no gold, no lifelong economic support, perhaps even physical punishment afterwards like we've heard of before).
Tomorrow we face Hungary in the finals. Hungary was no. five in the World Championship in December where they beat us in one of the placement matches. Not the best opponent for us, all had expected to meet the "good old arch rival" Norway. Even Camilla claimed that she was ready to meet the Norwegians without being frustrated by the focus on her and Mia. Poor Mia must now wave goodbye to both gold and silver, preparing to fight for bronze.
Articles in English:
Denmark in the semi-finals!
Au Revoir la France!
Denmark - France 28 - 26 after prolonged time 24-24 and first
half result 13 -8
Denmark is now in the semifinals and will meet South Korea tomorrow. The other finalists are Norway and Hungary.
Denmark played the best they've ever done during this Olympics during the first 20 minutes. We start out with sweeping away the French with 5 - 1 after 8 minutes in a 3-2-1. The French team seems very predictable with nothing new to show and their defense is too easy to pass. It makes a difference that both Tonje and Brødsgaard are in the middle defense. The Danes make good contra attacks again. Lene Rantala is a bit too nervous at first but shapes up later on. When there's 25 minutes left of the first half the Danes get to think too much about wether they could lose again like in the dreaded last World Championship and thus they go down a bit. Both teams make more technical erros at the end of the first half. The French defense gets better and we take up the old fault again; shooting too quickly and being sloppy.
12 minutes left of the match and 3 behind - the referees don't make it any better with their "selective vision". Nicola in the French goal is really good and Rantala goes a bit down. Camilla makes an important goal to 20 - 16. We have to use the same players all through the match as we have a very "narrow" team. Janne Kolling and Anette Hoffman show themselves indespensable with their great routine from previous big tournaments including the 96 Olympics and are cool when it counts. Camilla fails at the end and France gets up to 23 - 23. The team falls down into one of the famous "black holes" where nothing works. Pytlick even thought of taking Camilla out, but then she pulls herself together and rushes forward.
45 seconds to go and Camilla (who has been rather invisble apart from making all the penalty shots) scores to 24 - 23. She could have scored the decisive goal but screws it up (actually all expect Camilla and Lotte to do everything single handed and of course they can't). Fruelund not on the court in the second half for some strange reason. In the last minutes of the prolonged time Rantala saves an important ball and Camilla decides the match by scoring on a penalty shot when there is only 35 seconds to go! All four goals in the prolonged time was because of Camilla (scoring 3 and giving the ball to Hoff in a long perfect shot. What a nerve wrecking match (which I did only heard the result of when I returned from work, not having the guts to look on the internet for the result). Just because they managed to pull themselves out of the crisis, Camilla says it was the "new team's" best match in ages.
Denmark has fulfilled their goal for this Olympics: to get in the semifinals.
Article in English:
Denmark-Brazil 39-26 (19-12).
Denmark: Lotte Kiærskou 9(1), Anette Hoffmann 6, Mette Vestergaard 5, Janne Kolling 5, Katrine Fruelund 4, Tonje Kjærgaard 4, Camilla Andersen 3(2), Christina Roslyng 1, Tina Bøttzau 1, Karen Brødsgaard 1.
Brazil: Maria Sales 9 (1), Lucila Silva 5, Valeria Oliveira 5 (1), Sandra Oliveira 4, Margareth Montao 1, Viviane Jaques 1, Viviane Emerick 1.
A match which the Danes had to win, but the motivation did not last
very long and much were done halfheartedly. Lotte Kiærskou was the only
one taking her role seriously. We also had Anette Hoffman back on the
court for the first time in the Olympics, fully recovered from her
Denmark: Christina Roslyng 7, Camilla Andersen 7 (1), Tonje Kjærgaard
5, Tina Bøttzau 5 (3), Maja Grønbæk 4, Janne Kolling 3, Katrine Fruelund
3, Anja Nielsen 2, Karen Brødsgaard 2.
This was just a polite little game with the hosts, who never would have entered a serious tournament otherwise. The Danes quickly got to lead 6-2 after seven minutes and built up to 18-6 at half-time. Then there was time for experiments and letting the less important Danish players have a go on the field, eg. the goalkeepers Petersen and Mortensen (her debut - and a promising one) so all tried to score.
Two Danes actually were on the Australian team: The goalkeeper Rina
Bjarnason (who was really good) and Janni Bach. The rest of the Australian
players weren't really Australian either but European immigrants as
Austarlia is not yet a "handball nation".
Much needed victory
Denmark - Austria: 30 - 26 (16 - 13)
Sports Illustrated has set their eyes on Camilla and Mia for their next issue. The magazine which hasr 23 million readers will be able to read about the "interesting couple" three days before the Olympic finals! The poor girls' nightmare never seem to end! Americans know nothing about handball and are not really interested in the sports, but the affair is a "great story".
First Olympic match: Denmark versus Norway
Or in other words, the defending Olympic champions against the coming ones.
Denmark - Norway 17 -19 (7 - 10)
Denmark: Lotte Kiærskou 3, Tonje Kjærgaard 3, Janne Kolling 3, Camilla
Andersen 3 (2), Christina Roslyng 2, Mette Vestergaard 2, Katrine Fruelund
As expected Norway won this first Olympic match. If one has to find a
positive angle it is that the defeat was not as big as last time we met
them and their score was kept under 20 as planned. Our defense and keepter
Lene Rantala was performing their very best. Had the Danish attack been
faster and more imaginative, I think we could have won. There is still a
lot lacking there, no independent shooters take charge as before and the
players don't know each other as well as the "old" team did. Denmark
started in a good pace with 3-2-1 defence and two quick goals and were
leading for a long time. After half an hour the two teams were even for
the first time. A change to 6:0 and some replacement of players broke the
good rhytm and too many chances were missed by the Danes. There was a
time, where we were actually gaining in on Norway at the end, but then we
slid down again. There were many long periods where the Danes did not
score at all. Camilla made a couple of goals on penalty shots but was not
very prominent. Mette Vestergaard made a good job keeping Kjersti Grini
Private info about Camilla and Mia ordered deleted
The manager of the Danish Olympic Team has, by the aid of the IOC, asked SOCOG (who arranges the Olympics) to remove personal data about Camilla Andersen, Mia Hundvin and Camilla Martin (Badminton) in their files. He found the private information in their biographies to be too controversial and not fit for the foreign press. So listen carefully, you are not to know that Camilla is married to Mia and that Camilla Martin once posed in the nude for a magazine. Big deal, big secrets, big load of nothing. AND on the tabloids front page this morning!
Denmark - Sweden: 30-25 (13-10)
Karin Mortensen had her debut and did fairly well, even though she cannot in any way replace Gitte Sunesen. The defense was better, less technical errors than against Norway but the attack still lacks a lot. The following did well: Mette(5), Bøtte(6) and Janne Kolling(3) (Camilla and Tonje were spared). Lotte was topscorer with 7 goals. There are still too many hasty shots and panic.
Denmark-Norway 19 - 29 (10-12)
Such a bad experience I will not comment either - they should be ashamed of themselves to call themselves a national team. To give up like that in the second half and just let go is simply not an attitude that can give any victories. Norway is the winner of Scandinavian Open and the most likely next Olympic winner.
In the match against Norway Gitte Sunesen twisted her right knee. It turned out that the injury is so bad that she cannot go to Sydney. She may need an operation and cannot play for at least half a year. Maybe this is the end of Gitte's long career as goalkeeper. She has been there right from the start and through the "golden period", often overshadowed by Susanne Munk Lauritsen. Her match that day was no. 135. As her replacement we get the debutante Karin Mortensen from Horsens, 22 years old and new to the national team (apart from participating in some training camps earlier on). A talent but still very inexperienced. The third goalkeeper to the Olympics will be Rikke Petersen. The team and coach Jan Pytlick were very affected by Gitte's injury and deeply shocked. It will be a great loss to an already weakened national team. Lene Rantala is a fantastic goalkeeper, but this puts enormous pressure on her as more and more seems to depend on her great skills.
Friendship match against Norway
Denmark - Norway: 23-23 (13-10)
Articles (in Danish):
1. Lene Rantala (Larvik HK)
Substitute players: Rikke Skov (Viborg HK) Pernille Hansen (GOG) Line Daugaard (Brabrand)
A bit about the match on 30/7 against Sweden:
Team: Rikke Petersen, K. Fruelund, Pernille Hansen, C. Roslyng, Tina Bøttzau, Janne Kolling, debutante Rikke Hørlykke(her first match was yesterday), Anja Nielsen, Maja Grønbæk, Tonje Kjærgaard, Rikke Skov, Line Daugaard.
This was one of the four test matches before the final decision has to be taken: Who gets a ticket to Sydney?This tension was easy to spot in the first half, where all the players balancing on the edge were very eager to show their worth. Roslyng and Daugaard compete for the second left wing position (Hoffmann has the first), Janne is sure for the right wing where Anja and Louise may be out in the cold. Also Pernille Hansen, Karen Brødsgaard and Rikke Hørlykke fight for their tickets. So much that it all became a hectic mess of confusion. In the second half things shaped up, esp. after a 6:0 was reintroduced.
Janne Kolling proved that her 6 month break after her injury has meant nothing for her performance, which was the best in the match. Furthermore she could celebrate a record of 234 matches for the national team - at the same occasion Tonje played her national match no. 125. The debutante Rikke Hørlykke from FIF did fairly well in the attack co-operating with Tonje but was still very helpless and nervous in the defense.
Rikke Hørlykke to the Olympics?
Pytlick has chosen the following 20 players for the training camp 25. July- 5. August:
1. Lene Rantala, Larvik HK
Just as Camilla Andersen and Mia Hundvin thought they could have a private ceremony, registering their partnership discretely in Copenhagen last week together with their families, the tabloids found out and blasted the good news all over their front page. Not the best start of a life together, but probably an indicator of their future with the press never missing a single step! A big hurraah from here, I'm so happy for you!! However, it's tough becoming a symbol rather than a person!
IHF nominated the best female player in the century as being Sinaida Turtsjina from the former Soviet Union. Please notice who came second!
Sinaida Turtsjina was Olympic Champion for the Soviet Union in 1976 and
1980, World Champion in 1982 and 1986 plus silver in the WC in
Camilla Andersen only came second in the vote for the best female player of the year. Winner was Ausra Fridrikas from Austria and third came Cecilie Leganger, Norway.
Anja Andersen has been rewarded with 100.000 dkk. by the Topdanmark Foundation for her contribution to women's handball. Her development of the sport has increased its popularity incredibly. Another reason was her fighting spirit in the Olympic finals in 96.
The EC takes place on 8. -17. December in Rumania.
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