The Zamet and Marino Cvetković halls in Rijeka and Opatija said goodbye to the 10th World Cadet Championship with play-off matches for the 17th to 32nd place. In total, seven matches were played, four of which were in Rijeka, and three in Opatija. The New Zealand-Burundi match was won by the New Zealanders 10:0 after the withdrawal of the African national team from the competition. All other matches had their charm and story. Here’s a brief look at what it looked like.
Play-off for 29th/30th place: MEXICO – BAHRAIN 21:37
Bahrain said goodbye to the World Cup with a win against Mexico. They expected much more, but they certainly leave Croatia with a new experience that will one day pay off. It was an equal match only for the opening ten minutes. Then Bahrain made a series of 5 goals in a row and escaped to 10:5 and won the first half without much difficulty (18:14). Mexico went completely down in the second half. They managed to score only 7 goals and concede 19, and in the end suffered a heavy defeat, 37:21. As many as 17 defenses were made by the goalkeepers of Bahrain. The best scorer was Salman Alshowaikh with 9 goals. For Mexico, Brian Osvaldo Navarro Gonzalez and Jose Armando Soto Garcia each scored five goals. Bahrain thus won 29th and Mexico 30th place.
Play-off for 27th/28th place: RWANDA – USA 41:29
In the match for the 27th place at the tenth World Cadet Championship, the team of Rwanda won. Similar to the match for 29th and 30th place, the match was equal only in the first ten minutes (6:6). After that, the young handball players from Rwanda score five goals in a row and create the first big advantage. By the end of the first half, the advantage of the African team ranged from three goals to eight goals, which is how much the first 30 minutes ended with (19:11). In the second part, a similar story. Rwanda successfully maintained their convincing advantage, and at the end of the match even increased it. After 60 minutes, the score was 41:29 for the young team from the African continent. In the winning ranks, Kayijama Yves was the best with ten goals. Among the young Americans, the best scorer was Benjamin Edwards, who also scored 10 goals. And Grayson Wide stood out at the American goal with 23 saves.
Play-off for 25th/26th place: GEORGIA – SOUTH KOREA 30:33
The match for 25th place between Georgia and South Korea was interesting. In the first half, the Georgian national team had a solid advantage and kept it at three to four goals. At the beginning of the second half, it seemed that we would follow the same script. But then the South Korean team kicks into a higher gear and already in the 37th minute they are only one goal behind. Two minutes later they managed to equalize (22:22) and then take the lead (22:23). They continue to play well and increase their advantage, which they keep until the very end. The final score was 30:33. The best scorer in the winning team was Minjun Lee with eight goals, while the top scorer for Georgia was Sandro Darsania, also with eight goals.
Play-off for 23rd/24th place: CHILE – ARGENTINA 22:27
Two South American teams, Chile and Argentina, started the fight for the 23rd place in this World Cup. Young handball players from both countries started the match with determination. Both sides wanted to conclude their performance in Croatia with a victory. And that was felt in the result in the first 20 minutes. Almost all that time the score was tied, and the game was played goal for goal. But then the Argentinians score four goals in a row and thus take an advantage that, as it turned out in the end, they never let go. However, the young Chileans did not want to sign defeat. They tried and fought, twice they came to minus three, but they couldn’t do more than that. Thus, 23rd place went to Argentina, while they will return to Chile as the 24th national team in the world. With six goals, the best scorer of Chile was Cristóbal Oyarzún. Francisco Latorre made ten saves. As many as 11 players were among the scorers for Argentina. The best among them, with five goals, was Lucas Ezequiel Obregon Gomez.
Play-off for 21st/22nd place: ALGERIA – JAPAN 24:29
After beating Argentina yesterday in a tense and interesting clash in the last seconds, Japan won in the last match of this Championship and thus ended their performance in 21st place. Today they were beaten by the Algerian national team. The young handball players from the Land of the Rising Sun had a great start to the match. They took a 5:0 lead, and Algeria scored their first goal only in the sixth minute. By the end of the first half, Japan had a seven-goal advantage (17:10). In the first 15 minutes of the second part, they continued to increase their advantage, so in the 47th minute it was 26:15. But after that, the young Algerians woke up and scored six goals in a row and came within “only” five goals difference (26:21). Fortunately for Japan, it was in the 56th minute and their lead was still too big. The final score was 29:24. Mahdi Ahmed Anisse was Algeria’s top scorer with seven goals. Achiche Sid Ali recorded 12 saves at the Algerian goal. In Japan, Soi Hasegawa scored nine goals, and Shohei Yoneda had 17 great saves.
Play-off for 19th/20th place: MONTENEGRO – ICELAND 32:38
Although the final result may not say so at first (32:38), the match between Montenegro and Iceland for 19th place was tense. In the first ten minutes of the match, goal after goal was played, and it was only in the 14th minute that the Icelanders managed to take a two-goal advantage for the first time. Until the end of the first half, the Icelandic national team was in the lead, but the Montenegrins did not allow them to get too far. After 30 minutes the score was 18:15 for Iceland. In the second half, the Montenegrin team continued to press, so in the 37th minute they achieved the first tie since the ninth minute (21:21). For the next 10 minutes of the match, the Montenegrins tried to take the lead, but the Icelanders still resisted, and in the last ten minutes of the match, they further increased their advantage and brought the match to a peaceful end. Elmar Erlingsson was the best for Iceland with nine goals, Filip Gazdić for Montenegrins with 12 goals from 13 attempts.
Play-off for 17th/18th place: MOROCCO – SWEDEN 20:47
The most convincing victory on the last day of the President Cup was recorded by the Swedish team, who beat Morocco with 47:20. From the beginning of the match, it was a one-way game. The Swedes had a 7:0 advantage in the seventh minute, while the Moroccans scored their first goal of the match a minute later (7:1). Already at halftime, the Swedish national team had +14. It was 26:12. We saw the same story in the second half. The Swedes were superior in every aspect of the game, so their advantage only grew as time went on. After 60 minutes, the scoreboard showed 47:20. Elias Lundstad was Sweden’s best scorer with 10 goals, and 19 saves were made by Emil Holmberg Schatzl. Among the Moroccans, Abdellah Razgui was the best with eight goals.