Flawless performances help Egypt seal their eighth African Men's Handball Championship title

19 Jul. 2022

Flawless performances help Egypt seal their eighth African Men's Handball Championship title

Hosts Egypt became only the third side in the last 30 years to win back-to-back titles at the CAHB African Men's Handball Championship after a flawless tournament where they boasted a five-game winning streak, concluded by a clear 37:25 win against Cape Verde in the final.

13 teams lined up at the 25th edition of the CAHB African Men's Handball Championship, which took place in Egypt, in 6th of October, as Egypt had no rival on their way to the eighth gold medal in history, only two shy of the record still held by Tunisia.

Roberto Garcia Parrondo’s side, who finished fourth at the Olympic Games Tokyo 2020 last summer, enjoyed clear wins against Cameroon (40:17) and Morocco (36:21) in the group phase, followed up by another rout in the quarter-finals, 34:19 against Algeria.

The derby against Tunisia, scheduled for the semi-finals, was Egypt’s toughest game in the competition. Despite having several players out due to injuries, the Pharaohs still secured a 29:27 win, which saw them in the final.

There were little doubts about the winner of the final, as Egypt rode a 11:2 run to end the first half, opening a mammoth 12-goal gap at the break, 24:12.

Cheered on by a packed arena, the hosts left little details to fate and clinched a 37:25 win on their way to the eighth CAHB African Men's Handball Championship title, becoming only the third side in the last 30 years to defend their trophy, after Tunisia won in 2010 and 2012 and Egypt themselves in 1991 and 1992.

With the eighth title in history, the Pharaohs are now second in the all-time standings of the African top competition, with eight gold medals, six silver medals and six bronze medals, just behind Tunisia and steering clear ahead of Algeria, who are now third in the medal table, with seven gold medals, seven silver medals and five bronze medals.

The biggest surprise in the competition was, however, Tunisia’s demise, as the African powerhouse failed to secure a medal for the first time in history. Missing the final for the first time since 2000, Tunisia also conceded a 24:28 loss against Morocco in the bronze-medal game on Monday, as their uninterrupted streak of medals – 10 gold, eight silver and six bronze – was stopped at Egypt 2022.

On the other hand, Morocco secured only their second medal in history, tying their best-ever finish at the CAHB African Men's Handball Championship, the third place secured in 2006.

Egypt’s right back, Yahia Omar, was named the MVP of the tournament, with two other gold medal recipients, left back Ali Zein – for the fourth time in a row – and left wing Omar El Wakil making it into the All-star Team.

The top five teams – Egypt, Cape Verde, Morocco, Tunisia and Algeria – qualified for the 2023 IHF Men’s World Championship in Germany and Poland.

With those teams confirming their places, the group phase is now complete. Therefore, Egypt will play in Group G, alongside Croatia, Morocco and the United States of America, while Tunisia feature in Group H, facing reigning champions Denmark, Bahrain and Belgium.

Runners-up Cape Verde were allocated to Group C, filling up the place for the second-placed team at the 2022 CAHB African Men's Handball Championship, running up against Sweden, Brazil and Uruguay. Last, but not least, Algeria, the fifth-placed side in Egypt, meet Germany, Serbia and Qatar in Group E.

Final ranking

1. Egypt*
2. Cape Verde*
3. Morocco*

4. Tunisia*, 5. Algeria*, 6. Guinea, 7. DR of Congo, 8. Angola, 9. Gabon, 10. Nigeria, 11. Senegal, 12. Cameroon, 13. Zambia

*Qualified for the 28th IHF Men's World Championship in Poland and Sweden

All-star Team

Goalkeeper: Alae Laaroussi (Morocco)
Right wing: Hicham El Hakimi (Morocco)
Right back: Yahia Omar (Egypt)
Centre back: Leonardo Semedo (Cape Verde)
Left back: Ali Zein (Egypt)
Left wing: Omar El Wakil (Egypt)
Line player: Jihed Jaballah (Tunisia)
MVP: Yahia Omar (Egypt)

For more information on the event, visit cahbonline.info or the official Facebook page of the African Handball Confederation. 

Photo: CAHB / Ange Gnacadja