Team Players

Team Info

Greece 2022 represented an historic moment for Danish beach handball, with the national team winning their first-ever IHF Men’s Beach Handball World Championship medal.

Denmark had arrived in Heraklion as 2021 European Championship winners having beaten Croatia in the final 12 months earlier – their second, successive continental title.

However, on the Heraklion sand, Croatia got revenge, winning 0-2 and the Danish men settled for silver, to follow in the footsteps of their women’s side who also won world championship silver (in 2010 and 2012).

Despite qualifying for the subsequent The World Games in the USA, Denmark were not able to attend and with the cancellation of the 2022 edition of the ANOC World Beach Games, the Danes had to wait a year for their next international championships – the European Championship and European Games.

In Nazare, they made it all the way to the semi-finals, but lost out via shoot-out to Germany, before breaking the hearts of the Portuguese men on home sand, winning their bronze medal match 2-1.

A few weeks later, at the European Games in Poland, Denmark won just one of their three preliminary games – a 2-0 victory over Norway (they lost to Poland and Spain in the other two), before seeing off Croatia in the quarter-finals 2-1.

This set up a rematch against Spain, in the semi-finals, but the Spanish side won again (2-1, 21:20, 20:25, SO 9:8) to send the Danes to another bronze medal match. Again, they faced Portugal and again they won via shoot-out 2-1 (10:20, 23:18, SO 8:6).

Long-term coach Gorm Andersen has called upon experience for China 2024, with three Greece All-star Team players; Simon Jensen (goalkeeper), Martin Vilstrup Andersen (specialist) and defender Jeppe Villumsen included in his final squad of 10.

“We have selected an experienced team which has shown that they can perform in pressured situations,” said Andersen to  “The players have stood in the sand together many times and have built up a strong winning mentality.”

Six of that squad play their club handball for HEI, part of a burgeoning Danish beach handball circuit which continues to grow in the northern European country, mostly known for the success in the indoor version of the sport.

A wider selection of players has been training with the selected China 2024 squad in Aarhus in preparation for the world championship, while in the international break last March, the Danes played a friendly tournament in Tunisia, beating France and the host nation 2-0, Vilstrup scoring an incredible 26 points against the French.

In Pingtan, for China 2024, Denmark will face current European champions Hungary, alongside Oceania champions Australia and Asian runners-up Oman in their preliminary group.

“Our goal is a podium finish, but this is the strongest line-up I can remember and there will be no easy games,” added Andersen to “The ‘smaller’ Beach Handball nations are getting closer to the ‘big’ ones and I will not be surprised if we see a couple of them produce ‘underdog’ wins.

“Our preliminary group includes European champions Hungary and they will be treated with the respect that deserves. Many of their players have been together for a long time and they have the tools to go all the way and win the title. We always have tight, good matches with them and it will be no different when we face them in Pingtan; it will be a 50/50 match.

“We will be favourites against Australia, but again, I can’t remember a match against them where we had a clear win without a close set.

“And then Oman. I’m looking forward to facing them as Oman is my second home after I coached their men’s side from 2009-2011 and know the spirit of their players really well.

“They never give up and always stand together, strong, as a group. That, combined with a smart coaching team which always has a ‘joker’ up their sleeves when games are reaching the end means there are another opponent to be respected. China 2024 will, for sure, be a difficult task for us.”

Coach: Gorm Andersen

Key Players: Jeppe Villumsen, Martin Vilstrup Andersen

Qualification information: 2023 European Championships – 3rd

History in Tournament: 2004-2008: DNQ, 2010: 5th, 2012: DNQ, 2014: 4th, 2016: DNQ, 2018: 7th, 2022: 2nd

Group at China 2024: Group A: Hungary, Denmark, Oman, Australia