Angola seal 15th title at the CAHB African Women's Handball Championship

20 Nov. 2022

Angola seal 15th title at the CAHB African Women's Handball Championship

For the fourth time in a row and the 15th time in history, Angola sealed the gold medal at the CAHB African Women's Handball Championship with a dominating performance, sweeping their opponents on their way to the trophy.

After ten exciting days of handball in Dakar, Senegal, where the top teams on the African continent clashed and tried to secure the title, Angola eventually stood head and shoulders above their opponents, riding a six-game winning streak on their way to the trophy.

There was no doubt about the winner, with the final being a one-sided affair, as Angola beat Cameroon (29:19) in a rematch of the final from the 2021 edition, when they secured the title with another ten-goal win, 25:15.

The 13 teams taking part at the 2022 CAHB African Women's Handball Championship were divided into three groups, two of four teams each and one of five teams, with the top two sides in each group plus the two best three-placed teams progressing to the quarter-finals.

In Group A, Angola delivered a superb performance, winning all three matches against DR Congo, Algeria and Cape Verde, with a +48 goal difference, the best in the competition. With wins against Algeria and Cape Verde, DR Congo progressed to the quarter-finals, despite conceding a heavy loss against the champions, 22:35.

Hosts Senegal, who were drawn into Group C, had plenty of hopes before the start of the tournament but conceded a tough loss (27:28) in the last match of the group against the silver medalists of the 2021 edition, Cameroon, with the two sides, plus Cote d'Ivoire, going through to the quarter-finals.

Back after a 10-year hiatus at the CAHB African Women's Handball Championship, Egypt finished second in Group B, with three wins, as Congo finished first, sweeping their opponents. At the same time, Tunisia also snatched a quarter-finals berth, despite finishing on the third place, with Guinea on the fourth place and Morocco on the fifth place being eliminated.

After some exciting games, the four semi-finalists were confirmed on 16 November, especially with Angola and Cameroon needing to sweat for their places. The reigning champions took a 29:24 win against Tunisia, while Cameroon avoided elimination in the dying minutes against DR Congo with a 23:22 win.

Congo recorded the biggest win in this competition phase (35:21) against Cote d'Ivoire, extending their winning streak to five games. At the same time, Senegal were no match for an inexperienced Egypt team, sealing a hard-fought 21:19 win.

The semi-finals were even more balanced, with Angola surviving a serious scare against Senegal. In the end, they took a 24:21 win after extra time, with the score tied after 60 minutes (20:20). Line player Liliana Venâncio scored six goals for Angola, while Senegal's centre back Soukeina Sagna was unstoppable, scoring nine times.

Congo's winning streak has been snapped in the second semi-final, with Cameroon's Paola Ebanga scoring 10 goals, helping her side clinch a superb 27:25 to qualify for the fifth time in the final of the CAHB African Women's Handball Championship.

However, for the third consecutive time, Cameroon lost the final match of the competition against Angola, and it was not even close, with the story from 2021 repeating itself.

Angola enjoyed a good start, taking a 13:10 lead at the break and did not look behind, with centre backs Helena Paulo and Natalia Bernardo Santos combining for 21 of their team's 29 goals to secure a 29:19 win.

It was Angola's 15th trophy at the CAHB African Women's Handball Championship in 25 editions, with a period of dominance starting in 1992, when they secured the first tile. Since then, Angola lost only two gold medals in the competition, in 1996 and 2014, when they finished third.

In the bronze medal game, Congo beat Senegal (20:19) and won their first medal since 2008, when they also clinched the bronze.

The 2022 CAHB African Women's Handball Championship was also a qualification event for the 2023 IHF Women's World Championship, with four teams qualifying for the world handball flagship tournament.

Angola, Cameroon, Congo and Senegal will participate in the competition, with the first three sides also playing at Spain 2021. Senegal will return for the first time since 2019 at the IHF Women's World Championship.

Final standings - 2022 CAHB African Women's Handball Championship

1. Angola

2. Cameroon

3. Congo

4. Senegal, 5. Tunisia, 6. DR Congo, 7. Cote d'Ivoire, 8. Egypt, 9. Guinea, 10. Algeria, 11. Morocco, 12. Cape Verde, 13. Madagascar

Photo: African Handball Federation