Gametime: PH Beach handball squad seeks stronger showing in 2019 SEA Games

ABS-CBN News

Posted at Sep 17 2019 07:53 PM

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For a basketball-crazy country, beach handball is a little known sport.

But Joanna Franquelli, head coach of the Philippine beach handball team, said they are determined to make a mark and introduce the exciting sport at this year’s Southeast Asian Games, which will be hosted by the country.

“This is the first time that beach handball will be in the SEA Games. The indoor version was last played in 2007, so we're glad that it's included,” said Franquelli in Gametime.

Beach handball is a sport where two teams pass and bounce or roll a ball, trying to throw it in the goal of the opposing team. The game is similar to handball, but it is played on sand instead of in a hall. It is more challenging because the ball loses most of its bounce on sand. There is little dribbling, and players instead perform more passing as the rule of traveling still applies.

“We're growing slowly but every year we had our milestones. In 2017, we hosted an international beach handball competition to strengthen the program. We were able to host Vietnam and Thailand,” she said. 

Franquelli said beach handball athletes need agility, speed and strength. Although it is a game of tactics, players need power to execute the shots.

The coach noted that Vietnam and Thailand are powerhouse teams.

Franquelli said they were able to beat Indonesia in the past, and with their improvements they had close games against Thailand.

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2019 SEA Games