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Germany defeats Austria in the handball championship in the preliminary round

EIt was also about shaking off an annoying topic on Sunday evening in the Ondrej Nepela Arena. “When Julius Kühn’s positive corona test came in, we were already concerned,” reveals Patrick Wiencek, “but then it was no longer an issue before the game.” many corona cases, Wiencek denied: “When it starts, you are busy differently.” But the news should have been a shock in the evening hour.

Whatever the case, the men’s selection of the German Handball Federation (DHB) showed itself to be crisis-proof in the second group game against Austria and won 34:29 after a weak start. The professionals who were offside against Belarus on Friday convinced: Timo Kastening scored nine goals from eleven attempts. Luca Witzke also shone as a prudent playmaker and Lukas Mertens scored from outside and from counterattacks (five goals).

National coach Alfred Gislason used his entire squad, and that was the decisive advantage against tough Austrians, who had to play with a back row and were exhausted from the 45th minute. “It’s nice that we won, and it’s also nice that those who didn’t play the day before yesterday played a lot today,” said Gislason, “I’m very happy with everyone.” Till Klimpke was also gratifying offered in goal – 35 percent saves. Andreas Wolff could sit calmly on the bench.

In general, the second victory in the second game was extremely relaxing and also outshined the “new normal”, which not only accompanies handball professionals in their everyday life. Test – and hope. Since New Year’s Day, the DHB entourage had been subjected to a strict test regime, ordering a PCR test every other day. In addition, single rooms, compulsory masks, no visits to cafés or restaurants in Bratislava. A stroll through the historic city center up to the impressive castle? No chance. And yet, with all caution, the DHB reported Kühn’s positive test on Saturday evening.

The 28-year-old Melsunger has been double-vaccinated and boosted. On Sunday he moved symptom-free from the team hotel to the quarantine hotel of the European Federation EHF. Thanks to the quarantine shortened from 14 days to five days, after two negative PCR tests 24 hours apart, he could be back on Thursday at the start of the main round, which the Germans reached early due to Poland’s victory over Belarus, but not on Tuesday ( 6 p.m. in the FAZ live ticker for the European Handball Championship, on ZDF and on sportdeutschland.tv) in the last group game against the same Poles, who now also have two wins to their credit.

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