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Date: 9/26/2017
 

The road to the Women’s EHF EURO 2018 begins on Wednesday September 27, with 28 teams competing for 15 places at the final tournament. As hosts of the EURO, France are automatically qualified – but the likes of defending champions and current world title holders Norway, 2016 EURO and World Championship runners-up the Netherlands and 2016 Olympic champions Russia will contest the qualification phase.


The 28 teams are divided into seven groups of four, from which the top two teams will qualify for the final tournament after a round-robin competition. The best third-ranked team overall will also book a place at the EURO, which will be played in five cities across France – Nantes, Nancy, Montbeliard, Brest and Paris.


The first round of matches will be played on September 27 and 28, with the second round on September 30 and October 1. Four more rounds will follow over the course of 10 months, finishing in June 2018. Qualification Phase 1 was played in June 2017, with Faroe Islands and Kosovo the teams that secured the two places available in Phase 2 – a historic first for both nations.


The women’s European championship will be the second major international handball competition held in France within two years, after they successfully hosted the 25th IHF Men’s World Championship in January 2017. It will be the 13th edition of the Women’s EHF EURO, which began in 1994 with the first tournament held in Germany.


The top three teams will qualify directly for the 2019 IHF Women’s World Championship to be held in Japan. In the case that the winner of the European title is the 2017 world champion, the next three nations will make it to Japan 2019.


Norway are the record EURO champions, having claimed seven titles – in 2016, 2014, 2010, 2008, 2006, 2004 and 1998. Denmark have won the second highest number of trophies, finishing with the gold medal in 2002, 1996 and 1994. Hungary and Montenegro have each won one title, in 2000 and 2012, respectively.


For the first time, all matches will be streamed live on ehfTV, with the full schedule and results available here.

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