Kolding (dpa) – DHB boss Andreas Michelmann has made an urgent appeal to the European handball federation to cancel the EM qualifiers scheduled for early January just before the Men’s World Cup due to the corona crisis.
“I would like the EHF to think consistently about whether a European Championship qualification is absolutely necessary at these times or if it is not worth saying, in view of a World Cup, okay, we will forgo the European Championship qualifying matches in the interest of safety for the players, ”said the chairman of the German handball association on the sidelines of the European Women’s Championship in Kolding.
In the battle for tickets for the EM 2022, the DHB selection will have to play twice against Austria on 6 and 10 January 2021. The World Cup in Egypt starts three days later. Michelmann advocates isolating the team a week before the tournament to minimize the chance of a possible coronavirus contamination for all involved. “A team needs the seven days so that the players can safely enter the bubble,” said the 61-year-old.
Due to the ongoing pandemic, Kielers Hendrik Pekeler, Patrick Wiencek and Steffen Weinhold and Finn Lemke of MT Melsungen have voluntarily relinquished the World Cup. National coach Alfred Gislason will nominate his 20-man World Cup selection next Monday.
According to Michelmann, the European Women’s Championship in Denmark could serve as a blueprint for the Men’s World Cup. “The same way you can and should organize a tournament,” he praised the host. “They have shown that even in times of Corona you can have a major international event if you are aware of the situation and are willing to show certain hardships.” He would have liked the presence of representatives of the world association IHF in Denmark. “At least I haven’t seen anyone in Kolding,” Michelmann criticized.