Two Champions League teams, Hungarian MKB Veszprém and Danish Viborg HK, will play an exhibition game in the British capital to promote handball.
On 25 August, two Champions League teams, Hungarian MKB Veszprém and Danish Viborg HK, will play an exhibition game in the British capital to promote handball.
As London is preparing for the 2012 Olympic Games, handball is getting into the focus of attention for British sports fans.
To promote handball and present the game for the local public, an exhibition game will be played in the Chrystal Palace of London. IThelp, the company behind worldhandball.com (a handball content and statistical web portal), recognised the growing interest and together with the British Handball Association, they decided to bring top European handball clubs to London.
Eurohandball.com talks to the organisers and protagonists of the occasion.
Paul Goodwin, Member of the Board of the British Handball Association:
– This will be the greatest handball event in Great Britain for many years. Handball is not very well known in the country as it is not visible. We wanted to bring the game to London to let people see what high quality handball looks like, so we organise this game between the two Champions League teams. Ahead of this match, England will also play against the UK All Star selection.
There are 1,400 tickets available for the event, this is a small start. We hope that it will be successful and we can organise larger events in the future. There has been plenty of interest already from the sponsors and supporters of the two teams; now we have to work to involve local people as well.
Béla Grundmann, executive of event organiser IThelp:
– The sports hall will be full, it’s sure. There are many nations living in London who are interested in handball, while the Londoners have not seen such an event before. This will be a test for us: we can measure how interested are people in handball. If it turns out to be a successful test, we will bring more top teams to the city.
London is a cultural and economic centre of Europe, we must make sure that the game we love so much is played here as well…
István Pásztor, player of MKB Veszprém since 1993, the year of the first edition of the Champions League, but never played in England before:
– Great Britain is my favourite foreign country and I especially love London. Feeling so much attachment to this country, it always made me sad that handball is not played in England.
Now, it’s a great joy for me to play in London and an honour that we our selected to promote handball in the UK. It’s a pleasure to be among the first top teams who go there.
Other related article(s): http://www.ehfcl.com/en/men/news/10556/preview