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Race still on for Oceania handball crown

Friday 9 December 2022 | Written by Al Williams | Published in Handball, Sports

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Race still on for Oceania handball crown
Competition is tight at the International Handball Federation Oceania Trophy Tournament on Rarotonga. 22081210

Tahiti has stepped up in making their mark at the International Handball Federation Oceania Trophy Tournament on Rarotonga.

Day three of the Men’s IHF Trophy Oceania featured some exciting and hard-fought matches.

At the youth (U18) competition, Tahiti and New Zealand were determined to maintain their perfect record in a mutual encounter, but it was Tahiti who claimed a narrow win (28:27).

New Caledonia comfortably defeated home side Cook Islands (42:17), while Australia came from behind to celebrate their maiden victory at the event, 32:25 over Tonga.

Tahiti lead the race with six points, followed by New Zealand and New Caledonia, who both had four points.

On two points, Cook Islands and Australia were level, while Tonga had lost all their games so far.

At the junior (U20) tournament, it was Australia who made another step closer towards the title.

On Wednesday, they proved too strong for the hosts Cook Islands (30:6), notably conceding just one goal after the break. The other match was much tighter, as New Caledonia beat New Zealand (30:29).

Six youth and five junior teams are participating in the IHF Trophy Oceania, held between 5 and 9 December.  

Australia, Cook Islands, New Caledonia, New Zealand, Tahiti, and Tonga are fighting for the title in the youth (U18) category, and the same nations except Tahiti play in the junior (U20) tournament.

The events are being held in a round-robin format at the National Arena on Rarotonga.

The winners of both competitions will qualify for the Intercontinental Phase of the IHF Trophy. Besides, the tournaments will serve as the qualification events for the 2023 IHF Men's Youth World Championship, which will take place in Croatia, and the 2023 IHF Men's Junior World Championship, to be held in Germany and Greece.