The first Olympic handball champion as a coach, Vlado Stenzel, iconic face of handball in 70′, when he won gold medals with Yugoslavia (Olympic Games 1972) and West Germany (World Championship 1978), now at age 86, talked in podcast of Balkan-Handball #stayathome about the biggest problems of handball which prevented him of taking status of “world’s sport”.
“Nowadays, I see handball as a sport which only progress in certain countries. Handball is not enough attractive for the fans. There are lot of problems with rules of game. If you see who is in IHF Commission, there are some representatives of Africa, Asia, almost Apaches who don’t know anything about handball. They are making future of the sport? Rules are too complicated. Normal sports fan who came to watch handball needs a month to understand all the rules. You don’t know when is foul in attack or not, you need fingers to count passes, shooting on empty goal prevent you of playing “man on man” because you have situation 7 on 6. Tactical options don’t exist anymore if you have powerplay, you can play only 5-1 defense, with one guy who can steal the ball. You have no option to play “man on man” which is something interesting for the fans. Rules of the game are so bad, criminal – said Stenzel and concluded:
- It’s easy to make normal rules in handball, to make sport much more attractive for the people and media. The reason is simple. We have a goal. You have a lot of variation how to score that goal in comparison with basketball, when you have only one shoot. Basketball is world’s famous sport and we aren’t on that level because of rules. But in basketball rules changes are in hands of smart and intelligent people. Every single new rule in basketball was a step forward, you had a good reason for that. OK, “three points”, but you know why. You have 15 points less five minutes until the end, and you have a chance to score few shoots and to make interesting finish. In handball, when your team losing 10 goals, you can only leave the hall and go home. We have a lot of problems. I can’t make a change, as I have never been a part of any Commission, etc. I am now in Dalmatia, so I can only eat a good fish and drink some good wine – said Stenzel.