World Handball: How Cape Verde Made History

Cape Verde's men's handball team

Photo: Handball Base

Cape Verde’s men’s handball team are on a quest to make history as they head into the main round of the Men’s World Handball Championship in Sweden and Poland.

The Blue Sharks begin the group stages with a match against Iceland in Group 2 on Wednesday, having qualified from the preliminary stage thanks to a 33-25 win over Uruguay in the opening game – despite later defeats to co-hosts Sweden and Brazil.

In barely three years, Cape Verde have stormed the handball men’s scene in Africa. Two participations in the African Championship both led to world qualification – the second being a run to the continental final where they lost against Egypt last year.

“When we arrived in Tunisia for the African tournament in 2020, people looked down on us as if we were a youth team”, said Cape Verde’s Flavio Fortes, who has been an international player for a decade and who plays his domestic handball in France.

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