Preview: Egypt eyeing historic Olympic medal in handball

Ahram Online , Friday 6 Aug 2021

Egypt aiming to hit a milestone, with the country having never won an Olympic medal in any team sport

Egypt v France handball
Egypt s left back Yehia Elderaa reacts during the men s semifinal handball match between France and Egypt of the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games at the Yoyogi National Stadium in Tokyo on August 5, 2021 (AFP)

Egypt will be seeking to win its first ever Olympic medal in a team sport as the handball side face Spain in the bronze medal contest on Saturday.

The Pharaohs seemed determined to go all the way but were given a reality check against European powerhouses France, who beat them 27-23 in the semi-final on Thursday.

However, there is still chance for redemption as Egypt aim to hit a milestone, with the country having never won an Olympic medal in any team sport.

Egypt's journey to the last four, which included wins over the likes of Sweden and Germany, has been impressive.

Despite being deemed underdogs against France, Egypt's players seemed disappointed following the semi-final clash, in which they fought hard and were neck and neck with their illustrious opponents for long spells.

Yehia Khaled, one of Egypt's standout performers in the tournament, fought back tears following the loss, but he and his teammates are now eager to make amends.

"I really hope that we reach the podium after tomorrow because that is what this team deserves," the right-back said following the bitter defeat by France.

Egypt have never beaten Spain in 10 previous competitive meetings, drawing only once at the 1997 World Championship. Spain narrowly lost 35-33 to Denmark in the semi-final.

Egypt will have to do without star Ali Zein, the Barcelona new recruit having picked up an injury against France.

Should Egypt beat Spain, they will win their first ever handball medal outside Africa.

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