Iceland bid farewell to Denmark/Norway/Sweden 2023 with President's Cup win

13 Dec. 2023

Iceland bid farewell to Denmark/Norway/Sweden 2023 with President's Cup win

Iceland are coming back from their first appearance at the IHF Women's World Championship after 22 years with a trophy, after they remained flawless in the President's Cup, securing a 30:28 win against Congo in the final.

President's Cup
Placement Match 25/26
Iceland vs Congo 30:28 (14:14)

Both teams had previously won all their group matches at the President's Cup, while Iceland also managed to snatch a point in the preliminary round, but the European side had a tough challenge against their African counterparts, in the final of the competition.

Iceland were off to a good start and 13 minutes into the game they had a four-goal lead, an advantage built on a superb performance of goalkeeper Hafdis Renötudottir, who closed the first half with ten saves at 42% saving efficiency, but even with her strong display, Iceland did not manage to keep the momentum going.

As the halftime break was approaching, Iceland's attack was left reeling and their lead was slowly melting. Down 13:9, Congo made a 5:1 run on the wings of Betchaidelle Ngombele and Kassandra Jappont and tied the score (14:14), while the pair scoring ten of those 14 goals.

Renötudottir was accompanied by Elín Jóna Thorsteinsdóttir and their efforts on the goal are best described by Fanta Diagouraga's efficiency. The Congolese top scorer in the competition scored only three out of ten attempts and even missed her first penalty shots after 18 successful ones throughout Denmark/Norway/Sweden 2023. In spite of the heroics of Iceland's goalkeepers, Congo kept pouncing and grabbed their first lead in the match (20:19) in the 40th minute.

The pressure was high as the final whistle was approaching. The two teams were trading leads and even when Iceland set a 29:27 lead three minutes before the end, Congo stepped up a gear and closed to one but their two turnovers in the last moments of the game pushed Iceland to a 30:28 celebration, set by Sandra Erlingsdottir.

With a smile on their face and singing with the trophy in Arena Nord in Frederikshavn, Iceland secured the 25th place at the World Championship. In turn, Congo lost and took 26th place at their seventh world flagship competition, after previously never been placed lower than 23rd place.

hummel Player of the Match: ElĂ­n RĂłsa MagnĂșsdĂłttir (Iceland)