HANDBALL: Denmark wins first-ever World Championship … at home!

Most Valuable Player Mikkel Hansen leads Denmark to the 2019 World Championship

The 26th IHF men’s World Championships had a fairy-tale ending as Denmark won its first world title with a 31-22 win at the Jysje Bank Boxen in Herning (DEN) in front of a full house of 15,003 screaming Danes.

The Danes took an 18-11 halftime lead and never relinquished control, with scoring ace Mikkel Hansen tallying seven goals for the winners. He had help from Morten Toft Olsen (5) and three players who had four each: Rasmus Lauge, Lasse Svan and Mads Mensah. Norway was led by Magnus Jondal, who had 9 goals; no one else had more than three.

The event was co-hosted for the first time ever, by Germany and Denmark and the Germans finished fourth, losing to France, 26-25, in the bronze-medal match.

The tournament all-star team included :

Goalkeeper: Niklas Landin Jacobsen (DEN)
Left wing: Magnus Jondal (NOR)
Left back: Sander Sagosen (NOR)
Center back: Rasmus Lauge (DEN)
Right back: Fabian Wiede (GER)
Right wing: Ferran Sole (ESP)
Pivot: Bjarte Myrhol (NOR)
Most Valuable: Mikkel Hansen (DEN)

Hansen ended up as the leading scorer, with 72 goals, followed by Jondal (59) and Sole (58).

The tournament was a substantial success, as attendance of 906, 283 was recorded, an average of 9,440 per match, including some early-round games that drew very few fans.

The final standings: 1. Denmark; 2. Norway; 3. France; 4. Germany; 5. Sweden; 6. Croatia; 7. Spain; 8. Egypt; 9. Brazil; 10. Hungary; 11. Iceland; 12. Tunisia; 13. Qatar; 14. Russia; 15. Macedonia; 16. Chile; 17. Argentina; 18. Serbia; 19. Austria; 20. Bahrain; 21. Saudi Arabia; 22. Korea (unified team); 23. Angola; 24. Japan.