Handball: Team GB men thumped yet again and left eliminated from competition


Great Britain's men endured another torrid outing in the Copper Box
as Tunisia handed out a beating in their Group A clash that sent the
host nation crashing out.

Although Dragan Djukic's side have played their part in thrusting handball upon an unsuspecting British public, this loss follows hot on the heels of thrashings at the hands of reigning Olympic champions France, three-time silver medallists Sweden and Pan-American champions Argentina.

Given their infancy as a handballing nation, it is no surprise that Team GB have had such a hard time of it against teams who were winning medals long before they were even formed.

And the gulf in class was clear to seen this morning, though the way GB fought until the end deserves some credit and a flourish in the final throes of the first half gives optimism for the future.

Five goals from Sebastian Edgar and the continued form of goalkeeper Jesper Parker were other bright spots for the hosts.

After publicly targeting a win against Argentina in their last outing, Djukic was keen to rein his side's expectations back in before the match and the reason was evident from early on as Tunisia took a 4-1 lead after eight minutes.

That need not have been the case, though, as Chris McDermott, who received two two-minute suspensions in the first six minutes, opened the scoring and a host of early Team GB efforts were missed when they should have been scored.

Indeed, they only converted two of their first nine efforts on goal and that allowed Tunisia to take advantage with three back-to-back strikes, earning a 7-2 lead just before the midway point of the first half.

John Pearce ended that run with a nice finish from the wing, but three more goals from the Africans sent them 10-3 up and even at that early stage, that cushion was always going to be unassailable.

While a long morning was looking on the cards, goals from Sebastian Prieto and Gawain Vincent gave the home crowd something to cheer about and formed part of a four-minute spell that saw Team GB score four out of the next five goals, to bring their deficit down to 14-8 at the break.

However, that energy could not be renewed after the interval, and after Prieto missed a penalty, Tunisia scored five of the next seven goals to snuff out any hopes of a comeback.

In fact, a golden spell for the Africans put an unpleasant look on the scoreboard as a host of fast breaks and five unanswered goals gave them a 13-goal cushion, undoing all the good work from Team GB at the end of the first period.

One thing that cannot be levelled at Djukic's side is a lack of desire or fight, though, and despite Tunisia continuing to enjoy free reign in attack, Steven Larsson threw in a seven-metre effort which received a cheer as loud as the first from the unwavering home support.

Other goals from Edgar and Martin Hare went in as Team GB battled bravely, but they just could not compete with a strong Tunisia, who put themselves in with the chance of a quarter-final spot, thanks largely to 10 goals from Aymen Toumi.

Team GB complete their Group A campaign against reigning silver medallists Iceland on Monday, while they can take pride in the way they have helped spread the handball word over the last week.


Barn owls are among species that could be affected
charity appeal
After another poor series in Sri Lanka, Alastair Cook claimed all players go through a lean period
cricketEoin Morgan reportedly to take over ODI captaincy as ECB finally wield the axe
Life and Style
food + drink
Arts and Entertainment
a clockwork orange, stanley kubrick
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Caption competition
Caption competition
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Daily Quiz
Independent Dating

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

Day In a Page

Homeless Veterans appeal: 'You look for someone who's an inspiration and try to be like them'

Homeless Veterans appeal

In 2010, Sgt Gary Jamieson stepped on an IED in Afghanistan and lost his legs and an arm. He reveals what, and who, helped him to make a remarkable recovery
Could cannabis oil reverse the effects of cancer?

Could cannabis oil reverse effects of cancer?

As a film following six patients receiving the controversial treatment is released, Kate Hilpern uncovers a very slippery issue
The Interview movie review: You can't see Seth Rogen and James Franco's Kim Jong Un assassination film, but you can read about it here

The Interview movie review

You can't see Seth Rogen and James Franco's Kim Jong Un assassination film, but you can read about it here
Serial mania has propelled podcasts into the cultural mainstream

How podcasts became mainstream

People have consumed gripping armchair investigation Serial with a relish typically reserved for box-set binges
Jesus Christ has become an unlikely pin-up for hipster marketing companies

Jesus Christ has become an unlikely pin-up

Kevin Lee Light, aka "Jesus", is the newest client of creative agency Mother while rival agency Anomaly has launched Sexy Jesus, depicting the Messiah in a series of Athena-style poses
Rosetta space mission voted most important scientific breakthrough of 2014

A memorable year for science – if not for mice

The most important scientific breakthroughs of 2014
Christmas cocktails to make you merry: From eggnog to Brown Betty and Rum Bumpo

Christmas cocktails to make you merry

Mulled wine is an essential seasonal treat. But now drinkers are rediscovering other traditional festive tipples. Angela Clutton raises a glass to Christmas cocktails
5 best activity trackers

Fitness technology: 5 best activity trackers

Up the ante in your regimen and change the habits of a lifetime with this wearable tech
Paul Scholes column: It's a little-known fact, but I have played one of the seven dwarves

Paul Scholes column

It's a little-known fact, but I have played one of the seven dwarves
Fifa's travelling circus once again steals limelight from real stars

Fifa's travelling circus once again steals limelight from real stars

Club World Cup kicked into the long grass by the continued farce surrounding Blatter, Garcia, Russia and Qatar
Frank Warren column: 2014 – boxing is back and winning new fans

Frank Warren: Boxing is back and winning new fans

2014 proves it's now one of sport's biggest hitters again
Jeb Bush vs Hillary Clinton: The power dynamics of the two first families

Jeb Bush vs Hillary Clinton

Karen Tumulty explores the power dynamics of the two first families
Stockholm is rivalling Silicon Valley with a hotbed of technology start-ups

Stockholm is rivalling Silicon Valley

The Swedish capital is home to two of the most popular video games in the world, as well as thousands of technology start-ups worth hundreds of millions of pounds – and it's all happened since 2009
Did Japanese workers really get their symbols mixed up and display Santa on a crucifix?

Crucified Santa: Urban myth refuses to die

The story goes that Japanese store workers created a life-size effigy of a smiling "Father Kurisumasu" attached to a facsimile of Our Lord's final instrument of torture
Jennifer Saunders and Kate Moss join David Walliams on set for TV adaptation of The Boy in the Dress

The Boy in the Dress: On set with the stars

Walliams' story about a boy who goes to school in a dress will be shown this Christmas