18 European teams throw off the road to the 2023 IHF Women’s World Championship

30 Jun. 2022

18 European teams throw off the road to the 2023 IHF Women’s World Championship

The race for the coveted 2023 IHF Women’s World Championship spots has just started, as the nine pairings for the Qualification Europe – Phase 1 have been drawn at the European Handball Federation Office in Vienna on Wednesday, 29 June.

The 18 teams involved that did not qualify for the Women’s EHF EURO 2022 learned their opponents after being previously separated into two pots.

The fixtures that resulted will deliver nine teams that will progress to Phase 2 after a home-away double-header due to take place on 2/3 November and 5/6 November.

The only two sides that took part in the 2021 IHF Women’s World Championship in Spain and were part of the draw, Slovakia and Austria, will be heavily favoured in Phase 1 of the Qualification Europe.

Slovakia, who are now under the supervision of Spanish coach Jorge Dueñas, will face Latvia, while Austria, who finished 16th at Spain 2021, face Finland, playing their first game at home.

The ambitious team of Türkiye are also big favourites against Great Britain, while Iceland, eyeing their comeback to the women’s flagship event, meet Israel.

The winners will head to Phase 2 of the Qualification Europe, where they will be joined by 10 of the 16 EHF EURO 2022 participants, plus Czech Republic. 

A total of 16 European teams will be in the 32-team field for the 2023 World Championship: the co-hosts Norway (who are also the defending champions), Sweden and Denmark, the best three-placed sides at the EHF EURO 2022, due to take place in November, and the 10 winners of Phase 2 of the Qualification Europe.
The 2023 IHF Women’s World Championship will be the first event to be hosted by three countries – Denmark, Norway and Sweden, after the only ones to be co-hosted before were Austria/Hungary 1995 and Denmark/Norway 1999.

Qualification Europe – Phase 1 

Azerbaijan vs Portugal
Faroe Islands vs Kosovo
Slovakia vs Latvia
Iceland vs Israel
Greece vs Bosnia and Herzegovina
Ukraine vs Luxembourg
Bulgaria vs Italy
Austria vs Finland
Great Britain vs TĂĽrkiye

Photo: RFEBM / J.L. Recio