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Date: 7/14/2012

The V Beach Handball World Championship is history. What is your conclusion?

Giampiero Masi: This Beach Handball World Championship was a challenge. We normally have about a year to prepare such a tournament. This year the situation was special. We only had three months to prepare the WCh. But we made it hand in hand in a warm and friendly atmosphere. This is typical for our sport.


Have you achieved your goals?

Giampiero Masi: Yes, of course. Our main goal is easy to describe: “FAIR PLAY!” We achieved this goal here in the Oman too. That does not only concern athletes but also referees, officials and volunteers.


What was new in 2012?

Giampiero Masi: For the first time we had a professional announcer at the World Championship and an air-conditioned centre court with constant entertainment during the interruptions. We worked together with the beautiful “Greek Drops”, a famous cheerleading group from Greece. And we worked with a professional venue producer. So entertainment will be better and better from tournament to tournament. But we also arranged some new things on the court. Our referees used a headset during the match for the first time. And we tested couples coming from different countries in the placement round.


How do you rate the sporting level of the WCh tournament?

Giampiero Masi: Beach handball progressed. We saw matches on a high level, which were powerful, strategic with good tactics and on a high technical level. In fact we saw a larger number of such matches on top level than before. The team from Uruguay, for example, won against Croatia, Denmark and Norway. The girls from Australia overcame Poland. It was the first victory for a team from down under in a match against a European team at an IHF tournament. And I praise the very good performances shown by our referees.


The tournament is over. Tell us something about the next topics.

Giampiero Masi: We have to convince the national federations to firmly include beach handball in their handball system. And we have to combine the different beach handball seasons in the different continents by looking for time periods still available – a lot of work our Beach Handball Working Group will have to do. And we have to organise the coming highlights: The 2014 World Championship and next year’s World Games in Columbia. In Cali, beach handball will be played at the bull arena with an 18,000-seat capacity. What a great chance for our young discipline!