National champions women – part 1: north-west Europe

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18 of the best national leagues in Europe will provide teams for the 2014/15 Women’s EHF Champions League season. In five parts, shines the spotlight on each of the national champions who will take part in Europe’s top flight and document their race for the league title.


Part one is dedicated to teams from north-west Europe – Denmark, Sweden, Norway, Germany and Netherlands.


Denmark – Viborg HK

Viborg won the Danish championship for the 14th time in history, but it was the first time in four years the ladies from the historic town could lift the trophy after defeating ruling champions FC Midtjylland by a margin of just one goal in the two-legged final.


FC Midtjylland had a great season in Europe and managed to qualify for the MVM EHF FINAL4, but in the Danish championship finals they were just not strong enough to prevent a narrow defeat on aggregate against Viborg.


FC Midtjylland won the first match on home court 25:23, and they also had a fine start in the return match in Viborg Stadionhal, but the Cup Winners’ Cup champions came back into the game and ended up winning 24:21, giving the traditional club another title through a 47:46 win on aggregate and access to the Women´s EHF Champions League group phase which they missed last season.



Sweden – IK Sävehof

In Sweden, the men’s as well as the women’s championship is decided in only one final match, and the finals for both genders are played on the same day and in the same venue.


This year, Malmö Arena hosted the finals, where 6,723 spectators saw IK Sävehof win the women’s championship for the tenth time in history and for the sixth time in succession.


Their opponents in the final, Skuru IK, were really no match for the Sävehof team who impressed in Europe earlier this season by reaching the Women´s EHF Champions League Main Round for the first time.


Sävehof were leading from the beginning, and after an 18:12 lead at half-time, head coach Henrik Signell´s team were even more dominant in the last 30 minutes. Even though Signell rested some of his key players, the Sävehof win was a comprehensive 38:20.



Norway – Larvik

Once again Larvik HK were completely untouchable in Norway. For the tenth time in succession and for the 14th time within the past 15 years Larvik won the Norwegian championship.


And just like the previous nine years, the team under head coach Ole Gustav Gjekstad took the title in convincing style.


For the tenth season in a row, Larvik went through the league season undefeated. Only one point was lost on their way to the title and just to emphasise their dominating position in women’s handball in Norway, they also won the following play-offs, also for the tenth time in a row.



Germany – Thüringer HC

Just like in Sweden and Norway, there were no changes at the top of women’s handball in Germany either.


Thüringer HC took the title once again, and in convincing style as they went through the season undefeated.


The title was secured long before the end of the championship league which is formed by the best six teams from the ground series of the Bundesliga.


With two matches left, THC were already ten points ahead of second placed HC Leipzig, and the team under legendary coach Herbert Müller emphasised their dominance by winning the last match of the season 39:31 away against Leipzig who finished second, just like last season.



Netherlands – SERCODAK/Dalfsen

For the fourth year in succession, the women from SERCODAK/Dalfsen won the Dutch championship.


The Dalfsen ladies let no doubt, as to who were the handball queens of the Netherlands, as they faced Schoonmaak/VOC Amsterdam in the finals.


In the Netherlands, the finals are played best of three, but a third match never became necessary.


In the first match Dalfsen made the difference between the two sides clear, winning the match as 35:21. In the return match in Amsterdam, the difference became even bigger. After a 15:6 lead at half-time, Dalfsen cruised to a 33:16 victory, taking the title with the impressive aggregate score of 68:37.


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