Players and coaches on IHF Beach Handball Global Tour ready for Płock

19 Jul. 2023

Players and coaches on IHF Beach Handball Global Tour ready for Płock

This Saturday and Sunday (22 and 23 July) will see the spectacular medieval city centre of Płock in Poland welcome Stage 3 of the 2023 IHF Beach Handball Global Tour.

Men's and women's teams representing Croatia, Denmark and Poland will be joined by the Qatari men and German women for the event which will be played right in front of the spectacular city hall.

Charm and uniqueness of Płock Old Town
The stage marks the second time the IHF Beach Handball Global Tour has visited Poland, following Gdansk hosting the first stage of the 2022 edition and Artur Niesluchowski, member of the Polish Handball Federation Beach Handball Commission and organiser of the event, is eager to get started.

"We believe that having top national teams participate in the IHF Beach Handball Global Tour is a great promotion of the discipline and we can't wait for the first matches here in Płock," he said to

"The beautiful location of the courts in Płock's Old Town adds to its charm. The Old Town is an historic and picturesque area, known for its charming architecture, narrow streets and cultural landmarks. The presence of beach handball courts in this location adds a unique and captivating element to the sport."

And the players cannot wait to get on the sand in Płock, at the venue which will also host the end of the Polish beach handball circuit for the second year running.

"Those who come can expect a great court in the beautiful scenery of Płock's Old Town, organisation at the highest level and fans who will be there in large numbers," adds Poland men's national team player Maciej Fabianowicz to

"By playing in front of Polish fans, we can compete with the best teams in the world and such an experience will certainly pay off in the future. On the tour stage last year in Gdańsk they lifted us to a very high level and this year will certainly be a great event."

Hosts men's team ready to compete
But this beach handball season for the Poland men's team has been mixed. Five losses out of five at the 2023 EHF Men's European Beach Handball Championships in Nazare, Portugal, in May resulted in a 12th-place finish out of 16 teams.

That was followed by an impressive preliminary group shoot-out victory over Denmark at the 2023 European Games on home sand in Małopolska in June, before the host nation went out to Hungary in the quarter-finals.

Płock therefore represents a chance to show the home fans just what their country is capable of on the sand.

"We already have two events behind us and now it's the Global Tour in Płock; I hope that the victory over Denmark at the European Games will set the precedent," says Poland men's coach Jarosław Knopik to 

"I have personally never met Qatar as a coach, so it will be a match with a lot of excitement, but all the teams in Płock are at the best possible level, so all the games are going to be really strong. As a coach, I'm happy that we have the opportunity to play with the best national teams so often and I believe that the experience from this season will be present in the future."

His player was more direct with his assessment of what the team needs to do on home sand.

"This season has not been good for us," says Fabianowicz. "We are definitely embittered by these defeats (at the European Championships and European Games) so that's why we will try to play our best in Płock and win as many matches as possible to prove ourselves that we can win against the best and give some joy to ourselves and our fans.

"Croatia are current world champions and we know them very well because we face them at every event practically. In order to defeat them you need to reach the highest level in the world," he added. 

"The Danes won two bronze medals at the European Championship and the European Games and their game is very structured and effective, but at the last tournament we found a way to beat them and we will try to repeat it in Płock.

"We don't meet with the team from Qatar very often so we have to analyse their matches, but, for sure, it is a team from the world's top and I'm looking forward to meeting them the most."

Those outside of Poland looking forward to the Płock experience

"Płock knows about organising sports events, knows about handball and knows about beach handball so it will be unique – we would like to invite all the beach handball fans here," says coach Knopik.

And the excitement is evident in those fans who are coming, not least the opposing players and coaches.

"We are extremely glad that the IHF Beach Handball Global Tour will be in Poland again because the Poles have repeatedly proven themselves as great organisers of beach competitions, while the sport looks perfect in terms of production," explained Croatia men's coach Mladen Paradžik to

"Poland have organised a number of major competitions in the past few years, including the ebt finals, European Championship, University Games, Beach Global Tour and the European Games, so they will guarantee a spectacle."

"I heard that the courts are in the town square and that it will be a real attraction," adds Croatia women's player Anja Haramina to "The choice of location of the court is interesting to me and I am really looking forward to playing there. There will certainly be a lot of people, which means more promotion for our sport."

The central placing of the court will ensure both the hardcore, casual and new-to-the-sport fans will not be able to miss the fast-paced action on the sand and this is a fact not missed by Denmark men's coach Gorm Andersen.

"I'm really excited because of the location," he says. "We have not played in Płock before but we're looking forward to it. It's a good place to play and we hope many people come and watch our games."

Even with thoughts on his performances on the sand at the forefront of his mind, Fabianowicz has a key message for those making a debut visit to the historic city.

"Those who will be in Płock for the first time will definitely want to come back here because the atmosphere of this place is magical," he concludes.

For more information visit the men's and the women's competition mini-site. 

Photo: Beach Handball Global Tour Poland