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News Details

Date: 3/19/2016

After missing qualification for the 2012 Olympic Games by just one point the Netherlands refocused their energy on Rio 2016 with the slogan ‘One team, one dream’. 

Now the 22nd IHF Women’s Handball World Championship silver medallists are on the cusp of achieving their dream, and there is just one team between then and their ticket to the 2016 Games – Japan. 

The other favourite team to qualify for Rio from this tournament, France, enter their second match focused on securing their first two points after losing to the Netherlands in their opener. 

Saturday March 19 in Les Arenes, Metz
Netherlands vs Japan 16:45 local time

Though a win for the European side is the most likely end scenario in this match, it should be an interesting 60 minutes when the two fast-paced teams meet. 

Both Japan and the Netherlands favour a quick game heavy with fast restarts and counter attacks, though the Dutch found their usual speed thwarted slightly by France’s trademark strong defence in their opening match on Friday. 

Despite the obstacle presented by the world-class France squad the Netherlands still emerged with a clear win, continuing their exceptional recent form and looking very good to secure a ticket to Rio de Janeiro, which they can do with a win against Japan. 

Japan are also on two points after their opening win against Tunisia, but they rely on the results of other matches to book their place at Rio 2016. In any case if Japan pull off a win against the rampaging Netherlands it will be a big upset. 

France vs Tunisia 19:00 local time

After Tunisia lost by 17 goals to Japan in their first match of Olympic Qualification Tournament I, a win against France would seem a very tough ask. 

The odds are firmly in favour of the home side, who will undoubtedly take to the court with increased determination following their opening loss to the Dutch in front of the home crowd. 

Though France recorded a bigger loss than expected against the Netherlands, they remain one of the top teams in the world with a host of stars playing at the top of their game, with goalkeeper Amandine Leynaud the stand-out against the Netherlands. If Leynaud and her counterpart Laura Glauser are at their best Tunisia will face a big challenge in finding the goal behind the French defenders.