Sergei Shishkarev: “We worry for the women’s team before the decisive qualifying matches for the European Championships”

President of the Handball Federation of Russia told the ROC Information Service about the issues, that were discussed today at the meeting of the Handball Federation of Russia Executive Committee.

–The main attention was paid to the recent semifinal matches of the national championships between Spartak, Moscow and the Lesgaft-Neva University team, the permanent prize-winner of the last years,  said Sergey Shishkarev.  Two games in Moscow were, to put it mildly, ambiguous. From St. Petersburg club and its fans there were many claims both on the organization of competitions, and on refereeing. I myself was present at the second match, which turned out to be especially scandalous, and witnessed the guests’ unsportsmanlike behavior, crossing all boundaries. Now the Executive Committee not only approved the penalties imposed by the Organizing Commission, but also came to the conclusion that we need to understand, what caused it, and to think about how to eliminate such incidents. It’s great that the national championship has revived, that the new club appeared (Spartak), which created an intrigue and contends for gold, but no one should create any preferences. You can’t win using unsportsmanlike methods. We are going to hold a seminar with the coaches and judges, where  we will consider in detail the episodes from the ill-fated game.

We are also concerned that the players’ refusal to play for the national team is becoming the norm. It is beyond comprehension of the Executive Committee members, especially those of the older generation. How can one refuse to play for the national team. We have decided that only the Federal Medical and Biological Agency can grant exemption. A  medical certificate issued by some club or the district clinic is not enough. At the same time, we will not hide that, the coaches also bear responsibility, just as before. The coaches’ work should be corrected by the members of the Executive Committee and me, as the President of the Federation.

– Do you have any concerns about the results of the decisive qualifying matches for the 2018 World CUP. The Russian women’s team will play against Portugal on May 31 (away match) and at home against Austria (June 3)?

– I hope there will be no failures now, but there are reasons for concern. At the end of the season handball players have accumulated fatigue. After all, the national championship is over. This week they will play the Final Four in the Cup of Russia. As usual, there are those injured. In addition, the psycho-emotional state of the players of the Rostov-Don team is of concern. This club has made its way to the  Final Four, but it was not successful, having taken the last, fourth place. I think we will still be able to find physical reserve and attitude the athletes for fight, to cope with not the most difficult opponents.