2000 young handballers participating at the Tallinn Handball Cup
On Saturday the biggest handball tournament in the Baltics will start, as Tallinn Handball Cup kicks off at the fields of Kuristiku High School. In three days 2000 young handballers from seven different countries will participate in the competition, which includes 161 teams.
All the numbers are new records for the tournament, but especially impressive is the number of guests – 86 teams are coming from Latvia, Lithuania, Finland, Sweden, Russia and Belarus. This number impresses the host club HC Tallas the most. “Apparently we have done some things right in the past, as the tournament is gaining popularity among our closest neighbours,” said HC Tallas representative Jüri Lepp.
“Unfortunately one potential guest, the national team of India, cancelled their participation, but promised to make the long trip next year,” added Lepp. “The numbers are nice, but it is also obvious that the level of handball is rising with every year. To play against teams from different countries and different handball schools gives the young players excellent experience.”
This year the games will be played in six different age groups, for boys and girls: U18 (born 2000-02), U15 (2003-04), U13 (2005-06), as well as in Mini 2007, Mini 2008 and Mini 2009. All games will be played at the fields of Kuristiku High School, where 13 outdoor fields have been set up, plus the U18 matches will take place in the sports hall of the school.
“Preparations have gone well, but this is of course a year-long process,” commented Lepp. “Usually as soon as one tournament ends, we start preparing the next year’s competition. We have an excellent and very close team for organizing this event and we also hope the weather will help out to make the tournament a success.”
The Tallinn Handball Cup starts on Saturday morning at 11 and midway through the first day an opening ceremony will take place, which starts with a parade of the teams. “We are trying to offer the teams not just good level handball matches, but also create a handball festival. Last year we started with the parade and it was received very positively by the public and the participants,” added Lepp.
Tallinn Handball Cup full schedule: