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Croatia are world beach handball champions again

Croatian beach handball team 2024

(Photo credit © Jozo Cabraja/ kolektiff)

Croatian beach handball players have written another brilliant chapter in the sport’s history.

Croatia has just won the 2024 Men’s Beach Handball World Championships in Pingtan, China, successfully defendeding their world title they won two years ago in Greece.

Croatia has now won their fourth gold medal. This achievement places them just one title behind Brazil.

Over the last five World Championships, Croatia has been crowned champion three times and has earned two silver medals, solidifying their status as a global powerhouse.

Croatia clinched the title in China without a single defeat. In the thrilling final, a repeat of the final two years ago, they faced Denmark.

As anticipated, it was a highly dramatic match. Croatia won the first set 23-18. The second set saw a strong start from Denmark, who led 2-8. However,

Croatian goalkeeper Stipe Maleničić made several brilliant saves, bringing Croatia back into the game. Croatia held on until near the end, but fatigue set in, and they missed several clear chances, allowing Denmark to win that set 18-23.

This led to a shootout. The Croatian team displayed more composure and intelligence, ultimately winning 9-6. The key moment was a save by goalkeeper Maleničić against Joachim Trend Hansen in the first series.

The Croatian players remained flawless, and the experienced Ivan Dumenčić secured the victory by scoring just one point in the final series, which was enough for a grand celebration.

Croatian beach handball team 2024

(Photo credit © Jozo Cabraja/ kolektiff)

Thus, Croatia, after triumphs in Cadiz (2008), Budapest (2016), Crete (2022), and now Pingtan (2024), has climbed to the top of the world for the fourth time.

The Croatian team was: Stipe Maleničić, Filip Dominik Hančić, Ivan Dumenčić, Ivan Jurić, Josip Dukeš, Valentino Valentaković, Nikola Finek, Lucian Bura, Josip Leko and Filip Goričanec.

The coaching staff included Mladen Paradžik, Mario Močilac, Goran Krušelj, and Ante Taraš.

The bronze medal went to the Portuguese team, who defeated Germany 2-0 (25-24, 20-18).

Meanwhile, the Croatian women’s team finished the competition in 7th place. In their final match, Croatia defeated Brazil 2-1 (20-15, 18-26, 12-10). This victory was also decided by a shootout.


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