We use cookies

By continuing to browse ihf.info, you agree to our terms of use , privacy policy and the use of cookies. For more information, please review our cookie policy.



Date: 11/23/2018

More than one year remains until the 2019 IHF Women’s World Championship begins in Japan, but it is already time for the first qualification matches to be played as Europe’s challenging course to the final event begins. Phase 1 will be played from November 23 to December 2, with 16 teams vying for five places in the play-offs.


The 16 teams are divided into four groups of four, with Slovakia hosting Kosovo, Ukraine and Israel in Group 1; Switzerland hosting Faroe Islands, Lithuania and Finland in Group 2; Greece hosting Group 3, featuring Belarus, Italy and Portugal; and FYR Macedonia hosting Turkey, Iceland and Azerbaijan in Group 4. The teams will play a three-day round-robin tournament, at the end of which the group winners will progress to the next stage. The best second-ranked side overall will also proceed to the play-offs.


One day before the qualification phase throws off, the Women’s EHF EURO 2018 will begin in France. This continental event also serves as qualification for the 2019 Women’s World Championship, with the top three teams at the EURO securing a place at the World Championship. If current world champions France, who were automatically qualified when they won the world title in Germany in December 2017, are among the medal winners at the EURO, the next top-ranked team will clinch the World Championship berth.


The 12 teams that do not reach the podium at the EURO will meet the five teams progressing from World Championship qualification phase 1 in the play-off stage, with the pairings selected via a draw. Though they will not play the EHF EURO 2018, Austria are also qualified for the play-off stage, as the second best third-ranked team from the EURO qualification. The 18 teams in phase 2 will play two matches, home and away, and the aggregate winners of each pairing will secure a place at the World Championship in Japan.


More information on the World Championship qualification phase can be found on the official website of the European Handball Federation.

Photo: Germany 2017/Klahn