Lois Abbingh from Groningen was in good form at the World Cup against Ukraine. The Dutch handball players pulverized the Eastern Europeans 40-21.
As a result, the Dutch women have the quarter-finals within reach after their fifth win in a row in Frederikshavn. The last game in the main round against Spain awaits on Sunday, which lost its undefeated status after losing to the Czech Republic. National coach Per Johansson was full of praise for his team. “The team is in balance. It doesn’t matter who I bring in, every player shows the right energy and work on the field,” said the Swede at Viaplay.
The Dutch handball machine previously defeated Argentina (41-26), Congo (40-20), the Czech Republic (33-20) and Brazil (35-27) with playful ease. The Netherlands must lose by a very large margin to Spain on Sunday if they want to miss out on the quarter-finals. That chance actually doesn’t exist. But Johansson keeps his girls on their toes: “It will be all or nothing and we could use a match like that. We have to be sharp for the quarter-finals. From now on it will be more difficult, but I see that all players are doing well, even those who get less playing time. I am proud to be the coach of these girls.”
Lois Abbingh can let off steam offensively
Abbingh, who plays in Norway in the competition for Champions League winner Vipers, was given a lot of playing time by the national coach against Ukraine. She was able to perform offensively against the weak opponent. The Groningen native scored eight times with devastating strikes. The Netherlands’ 40th goal also came in the last second of playing time in the one-sided match.
Abbingh also scored from a penalty throw from seven meters. A task that had been taken over by Angela Malestein in recent years. The builder trained at E&O in Emmen had not yet forgotten. She left the Ukrainian goalkeeper without a chance with a real cannonball. The Groningen native was named the best player of the match. “That’s nice. The team is in a flow and I also benefit from that,” said Abbingh. “We led 19-8 after the first half, a difference of eleven goals. And yet we were not satisfied with our game: it shows how demanding we are.”
The Netherlands is quickly putting its affairs in order
The Dutch team had to get going against Ukraine and quickly fell behind 1-3. But the Netherlands quickly put its affairs in order. Thanks to effective corner players Bo van Wetering (two goals) and Angela Malestein (four) and a score from circle runner Nikita van der Vliet, the deficit was turned into a lead.
The Dutch coverage was rock solid again, behind which Rinka Duijndam, who this time was allowed to play many minutes in goal, often intervened well. The Netherlands, which once again had success with lightning-fast counter-attacks, took a 19-8 lead at halftime.
In the second half, the Dutch team continued what it was doing in a match that was never exciting. The young talent of the Amsterdam VOC, Loïs van Vliet, was allowed to fill in on the left corner for Van Wetering during her first final tournament and scored two goals. Kelly Vollebregt, who often does not get much playing time, had a shot on the right. She made six.
Tess Lieder, Abbingh’s sister-in-law, played her 150th international match. She came on and was allowed to keep goal for the last twenty minutes.