Hungarian challenge for Swiss handballers

Hungary will form the final hurdle in Switzerland's bid to reach the European handball championships. On Tuesday the two teams were drawn against each other for June's qualifying playoffs.

This content was published on February 20, 2001 - 15:41

The playoffs will take place over four matches in the first half of June, beginning with two games in Switzerland.

History doesn't favour the Swiss. In their 31 previous encounters with Hungary, Switzerland have won just nine matches and lost 20. But despite the statistics, coach Arno Ehret seemed fairly happy with the draw.

"We're taking on a side who are definitely among the middle order of national teams," Ehret said on Tuesday. We could have been handed an easier task, but it could have been a lot harder too. We're not going to be favourites, but we also can't complain."

The championship finals in Sweden will, for the first time, involve 16 nations. Five teams (Sweden, Russia, Spain, France and Slovenia) have already booked their places while another 22 countries, including Switzerland, are fighting for the remaining 11 spots.

swissinfo with agencies

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