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Date: 8/9/2018
 

Preliminary Round Group D of the 2018 IHF Women’s Youth (U18) World Championship in Kielce enters its third matchday as Montenegro look to get their first win, against Korea, who know a third win in a row will see them on their way to the eighth-finals.

The all-European clash between France and Spain follows before the final match of the group tomorrow between Kazakhstan and Tunisia.

All Group D matches will be played at the 1,000-capacity Politechnika Sports Hall, Kielce University of Technology, and live streamed HERE.

IHF delegate and referee nominations for all games can be found HERE.

Preliminary Group D: Wednesday 8 August 2018
All times local

Featured Match: Korea vs Montenegro 10:00hrs
After Korea coach Seong Ok Oh told IHF.info that their first two games - both wins against Tunisia and Kazakhstan - were for practise, her Asian side face their first tough test at Poland 2018 as they take on Bojana Popovic's Montenegro.

The European team were disappointing in their 20:16 loss to Montenegro, registering a 39% strike rate in front of goal, but they started the process of turning that around, against Spain, in their last match as they were successful in 50% of their shots in a match which they could have won or lost, but eventually drew 18:18.

It is easy, and maybe lazy, to say that this will be a classic match up of the traditional Korean fast-break scoring lots of goals, versus a big and tough 6-0 defence from Montenegro that does not allow many strikes, but the facts bear that out as after all 24 teams in Poland have played two matches, Korea lie top of the scoring charts with 84 strikes while Montenegro are rock-bottom with 34 and in joint-fifth place in terms of goals conceded (37).

However, against Spain, Popovic's side at times had three players waiting on the edge of the opposition area after a turnover, but the ball could not be recycled quickly-enough as the London 2012 silver medallist goes up against the five-time Olympian and four-time medallist Oh.

France vs Spain 12:00hrs
Depending on the result of the opening match, whichever team wins this one could go top of the group and be well-placed to take the first place position going into the final round of games, easing a path into the eighth-finals and possible quarter-final spot.

Spain and France are not known for their leaky defence and with the French conceding just 28 times in two matches and Spain 36 - to lie top and third-place respectively in the defensive charts, a low-scoring match is set to take place, but in handball, who knows?

Tunisia vs Kazakhstan 14:00hrs
Both teams have played two and lost two, but with lots of positives to take from their four losses between them, this match will mark the first point or points for one of these teams.

This Asia vs Africa clash has little history in world handball but with both teams playing Korea in Poland a comparison can be made. In their match, Tunisia lost 45:27 while the all-Asian encounter saw the Kazakhs lose by less, 39:24.

“We played our good game only in the second half,” said Kazakhstan coach Berik Beknazarov after the Korea loss. “Our first half was not so good, but our girls started to play harder and better in the second half and we liked it.

“Our combination of movement and play was better than our first game – we only named 14 players in our original squad and Zhanelya Tolykbay has a stomach bug, so we only had 13 for Korea, but that’s enough – it’s pretty good.

“The first thing for us now is that we have to beat Tunisia.”

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