This year the biggest positive surprise in Women’s Champions League this year is Itxako Reyno de Navarro. On the way to final they managed to go over teams like Gyor, Valcea, Buducnost, Krim… Carmen Martin (22), the right wing of the Spanish champion and the National team (Silver medal at the European Championship 2008), spoke to Balkan-Handball.com.
BH: It is your first season in Itxako and the team beat Gyor and surprised everyone, what was the secret of your success?
CM: Yes, my first season here, and I’m glad part of the team, and that the team is playing as one. Against everyone we played we were not the favorites, including Gyor. I hope this will be the move forward for Spanish handball, and following male handball, wome’s handball in Spain will make big progress too.
BH: Itxako plays with great self-confidence. What is this due to, and what was the hardest match so far in the Champions league.
CM: Probably the hardest match was the group phase, where I played for the first time in the Champions League. As for the self-confidence, it derives from the fact that the team plays with all 15 players, not just 7-8 players that carry the game.
BH: In the final you play against Larvik. What are your expectations, and is it a plus that the second game is played at home in Spain?
CM: We know Larvik, it is a great team with many great players that have huge experience. But if we want to win, we will have to do as we did so far, playing very good defence. I don’t think that the second match at home is a great and decisive factor, even though many of the fans and my co-players will agree that it might prove important.
BH: How is important to you the support from the fans, and do you have anything to say to the handball fans that follow Balkan-Handball.com ?
CM: The fans are very important to us, and it’s them that help us in the hard moments during the games. I hope they have great time at our games and we will try our best. I didn’t know Balkan-handball.com existed, but from now on I will follow it, and I’m glad that there are people that greatly appreciate women handball.
* The first final match is to be played on May 7th at 16:45 in Norway. The return match is one week later, on May 15th at 19:45.