On Tuesday, September 24, the President of the Handball Federation of Russia, Sergey Shishkarev, made a working visit to Switzerland. In Basel, a meeting was held between the Head of the HFR and the President of the International Handball Federation (IHF) Dr. Hassan Moustafa.

A wide range of issues were discussed during the dialogue. Sergey Shishkarev told about the change in the number of participants of the Women's Super League Parimatch, saying that a new ambitious team CSKA was created in Moscow. At the same time, the IHF President was shown a promotional video about the club.

“The number of participants in the Super League Parimatch increased to 12 teams. The competition became integral, it allowed to make a more convenient match calendar, which helps to attract spectator interest. The new CSKA team sets itself high goals, it intends to compete with the leading clubs of the country and fight for the highest places - first in Russia, and then in the European competitions.

Thanks to the formation of the army club, Moscow became a full-fledged center of handball development, returning this status after decades. The capital of Russia has created a system of development of our sport - from youth to professional level", - said Sergey Shishkarev.

Hassan Moustafa said that IHF programs for the development of youth handball are in place – “Handball at School” and “Handball at Academies”. It was decided that the Handball Federation of Russia after a detailed study of the presentation of the project will consider the possibility of implementing a startup. The HFR is considering an option under which a contract will be concluded between the School of Olympic Reserve No. 2 and the IHF with necessary assistance and support. It is also possible to organize special handball lessons at schools.

During the discussion on the participants of the Russian Championship, Sergey Shishkarev expressed the idea of integrating clubs from China into Russian competitions, given that the IHF pays special attention to the handball development in China.

"Teams from China could be based in Russia, for example, in Yekaterinburg, or other regions," - said Sergey Shishkarev.

The Head of the HFR said that a meeting would be organized with the leadership of the Chinese Handball Federation dedicated for the discussion of this issue.

Other issues were also discussed during the meeting - the participation of the Delo Group of Companies as the title sponsor of the Women's EHF Champions League, the performance of the Russian clubs in the European competitions and the success of Rostov-Don, which reached the final match of the main European club tournament last season.

Sergey Shishkarev also spoke about the preparation of the Russian women's and men's national teams for the tournaments of the 2019/20 season. The HFR President said that in September, the Russian women’s team after the changes in the coaching staff would play two matches of the Men’s EHF EURO 2020 Qualifiers against Slovakia on September 25 and against Switzerland on September 29. The main tournament of the year for the team would be the World Championship in Kumamoto.

“The women's team of Russia, despite the loss of Daria Dmitrieva due to the injury, has the highest goal - the fight for medals. A victory at the World Championship will allow us to directly qualify for the Olympic Games in Tokyo, which is especially important for us,” the President of the HFR said.

Hassan Moustafa said that he was informed that Evgeny Trefilov left his post in the Russian women's national team and was appointed Vice President of the HFR. The Head of the IHF proposed to recommend the outstanding coach, winner of the Rio Olympic Games, four-time world champion, to the IHF award for his services and contribution to the development of world handball.

Continuing the theme of national teams, Sergey Shishkarev explained that the Russian men's team in early January 2020 would take part in the pre-Olympic European Championship, where at the first stage they would face the teams of Hungary, Denmark and Iceland.

“The Russian men's team has a difficult task to qualify from the group and then take the highest possible place to qualify for the Olympic qualification tournament. We set a goal to be represented by the both men’s and women’s national teams in Tokyo. The national teams of Russia are our priority this season, and we will do our best for their successful performance” – concluded Sergey Shishkarev.

Hassan Moustafa thanked the Head of the HFR for the meeting and noted that he was interested to receive detailed information about the situation in Russian handball, as well as to discuss a number of important topics.