Ireland Men gear up for Emerging Nations Challenge

As soon as the final whistle went in Luxembourg in January and the curtain came down on the Euro 2022 Phase 1 qualifiers the thoughts of the Irish Men’s turned to 2019 IHF Emerging Nations Trophy.

3 tough games had left the squad feeling they had some unfinished business left on the handball court and so after a brief break the team regrouped and a plan was put in place leading up the June event.

This years Emerging Nations event will take place in Tblisi, Georgia and the competition has been expanded by the International Handball Federation to 12 teams.


1: Bulgaria (BUL), PR of China (CHN)

2: Georgia (GEO), Azerbaijan (AZE)

3: Great Britain (GBR), Ireland (IRL)

4: Colombia (COL), Malta (MLT)

5: Cuba (CUB), USA

6: India (IND), Nigeria (NGR)

Following on from the draw in IHF HQ in April the Irish Men now know who they will be up against and when they will be playing and most importantly resting. Ireland will play 7 matches in 9 days.



Group A

PR of China


Great Britain





Group B







Ireland begin their campaign with a match against USA, who have made great strides recently as the build towards a home Olympics in 2028 and a guaranteed World Championship place in 2025.

Unknown quantity Nigeria are next up, followed by a clash against hosts Georgia. Matches against familiar foes Bulgaria and Malta bring the group phase to an end, before two play-off matches.

As part of the team’s preparation for the championship, a training camp in Algeciras, Spain took place last week another camp was held in Denmark in April.

As with previous editions of the IHF Emerging Nations Championships only 3 out of the 14 man squad can be over 24 years of age.

To keep up to date with all the news and results you can click on the events official website here


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