Alain Portes, the new French women’s national team head coach, has selected 18 players to prepare for the ECh 2014 qualification games against Slovakia and Finland.
Due to the absence of Camille Ayglon and Claudine Mendy on maternity leave and Blandine Dancette and Mariama Signaté injured, Portes has named five rookies in his list.
“Our main target is to prepare the 2016 Olympics. I traveled a lot across France since the beginning of the season, I went to a lot of games and I watched videos. That’s how I made my choice,” explained Portes to eurohandball.com.
The squad of France:
Goalkeepers: Amandine Leynaud (Vardar Skopje),Cléopâtre Darleux (Viborg HK), Armelle Attingré (Issy-Paris Hand)
Wingers: Paule Baudouin (Metz), Siraba Dembele (Vardar Skopje), Audrey Deroin (Toulon Saint Cyr Var Handball), Lesly Briémant (Issy Paris Hand)
Line players: Nina Kanto (Metz), Astride Ngouan (Issy Paris Hand), Julie Gioiorani (Toulon Saint Cyr Var Handball)
Back court players: Marie-Paule Gnabouyou (Toulon Saint Cyr Var Handball), Audrey Bruneau (Fleury Loiret Handball), Dounia Abdourahim (Toulon Saint Cyr Var Handball), Gnonsiane Niombla (Fleury Loiret Handball), Alexandra Lacrabère (Union Mios-Biganos Bègles)
Slovakia is very hungry also to be qualified to a main event of handball, and from this year they have a new head-coach, Dusan Poloz. He led the Czech Republic-team at the ECh in Serbia 2012, as an assistent coach, but he followed the call and became head-coach at their neighbors.
“I can’t wait for the match against France to start. I will enjoy every game as Slovakian coach. This is why we do this sport. I feel proud and privileged to lead the Slovakian national team.
“We have to stay positive. This is my message to the players. I am not saying we have to win the game in France, but we have to put everything into our performance – Poloz said to eurohandball.com
Goalkeepers: Zaneta Tothova (Stella Saint-Maur), Lucia Gubikova, Adriana Medveova (both Iuventa Michalovce)
Line players: Andrea Czanik-Weibelova (DJK/MJC Trier), Dominika Hornakova, Patrícia Wollingerova (both Iuventa Michalovce)
Wingers: Lydia Jakubisova (Thüringer HC), Simona Pilekova (SG BBM Bietigheim), Dagmar Stuparicova (SV Union Halle-Neustadt), Lucia Sukennikova, Reka Bízikova (both HK Slovan Duslo Sala), Selma Blazekova (HK Slávia Partizanske)
Back court players: Alzbeta Pollakova (BV Borussia 09 Dortmund), Martina Skolkova (Cercle Dijon Bourgogne/Fr.), Petra Benuskova (DHK Baník Most), Marianna Rebicova (Iuventa Michalovce), Simona Szarkova, Eva Veselkova, Sofia Demajova (all HK Slovan Duslo Sala), Klaudia Michnova, Andrea Kerteszova (both HK Slavia Partizanske)