Greece beat Qatar men’s U18 national team to unofficially inaugurate the Karteros Beach Sports Centre

Greece national men’s team unofficially inaugurated the Karteros Beach Sports Centre with a friendly game against Qatar’s national youth team, two days before the official throw-off of the IHF Beach Handball U18 World Championship in Heraklion, Crete.

The hosts beat Qatar in straight sets 2:0 sets (24-12, 16-12) and Greece’s coach Giannis Lazaridis had the chance to test his players’ readiness before he announces his final selection ahead of the start of the Men's and Women's Beach Handball World Championship on Monday June 20.

Giorgos Eleftheriadis scored half of Greece’s points in the first set and was the leading scorer in the second set as well, along with Tsanaxidis.

Both coaches, Lazaridis and Shoushou, agreed to play a shoot-out after the end of the game, which Greece won with 6:4.

The new state-of-the-art facilities of the Karteros Beach Sports Centre will be officially inaugurated on Monday June 13 by the Deputy Minister of Sports Mr Lefteris Avgenakis and the Archbishop of Crete Mr Eugenios.

Two more test-event matches between men’s and women’s national teams of Spain and Argentina will follow the inauguration, starting at 11:30 and 12:15 respectively.


Quotes from Greece coach, Giannis Lazaridis:

“We were aware that we could had the upper hand since our opponents fielded a team of (U19) youngsters.

“Nevertheless, it was a good test for us in terms of our tactics, regardless of the pressure our opponent put on us and their capacity.

“I think that during our ten-day stay here in Crete we will gradually find our rhythm. We aim to improve our weaknesses and get ready for the start of the tournament".

Quotes from Qatar coach, Ali Helend

"I have participated in many competitions as a coach, but for the Qatari national team it’ll their first time at such a high level.

“Our preparation was not ideal due to my players’ school exams. In the last few days we’ve tried to prepare as best as we could to present a competitive team. We are also interested in gaining experience from such big events".

"The state-of-the-art facilities will help the teams raise their game level and offer spectators a nice spectacle".

Quotes from Qatar player, Malik Shoushou

"We are all happy to be here, especially me, since it’s my first time in Crete. We feel lucky to play in such a great facility and our goal is to play as best we can, gain experience and win as many matches as possible."

Quotes from Greece player, Giorgos Eleftheriadis:

“Compared to the first friendly game we played with Qatar a few hours ago, we were much better in this one. Our overall performance was satisfying, we made less mistakes and I think we are getting closer to what we want to present.

“However, there is still room of improvement until the Championships first throw-off. Hopefully as the days go on we will improve and get to the level we want.

The facilities here at Karteros Beach are state-of-the-art and everything is very well organised. The stands can accommodate a lot of people. As far as the sand is concerned, it is what the players want. I hope that everything will go smoothly and that we will experience a high-level event ".

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