Egypt and Denmark gave the world one of the most exciting and thrilling handball matches on Wednesday evening at the IHF Men’s Handball World Championship – Egypt 2021.
The quarterfinal event saw the Pharaohs miss out on the semi-finals to reigning world champion after a penalty shootout that eventually saw the match end in Denmark’s favour at 39-38.
The second half of the match had ended in a 28-28 draw, sending both teams to overtime. The first overtime ended with another draw, leading the teams to a second overtime that was then followed by a penalty shootout.
Despite their best efforts, the Egyptian team lost 4-3 on penalties.
The performance by Egypt and Denmark has been praised globally, with commentators and social media users calling it a dramatic and thrilling event. Denmark’s Mikkel Hansen called the match “one of the craziest games” he’s ever been a part of in his career.
“This is one of the craziest games I’ve been part of in my National Team career” 😳
Mikkel Hansen’s interview after the clash 🆚 the hosts! 🇩🇰#Egypt2021 | #Håndbold | @dhf_haandbold | @MikkelHansen24 pic.twitter.com/dEWeQtkPfl
— Handball Egypt2021 (@Egypt2021EN) January 27, 2021
The Pharaohs in particular have been praised for their efforts against Denmark, who won their first world championship title in 2019.
Denmark’s Ambassador to Egypt Svend Olling tanked Egypt for a “dramatic quarterfinal” on Twitter, adding that he had “deep respect for the Egyptian team”.
WHAT A HANDBALL DRAMA!
Thank you Egypt for a dramatic quarter final. After double extended play and a penalty shoot out, Denmark marginally clinches a place in the semi finals of the Men’s Handball World Cup. Deep respect for the Egyptian team! @Egypt2021 #GODenmark #GOEgypt pic.twitter.com/8XKLW73uJw
— Svend Olling (@DKAMBinEgypt) January 27, 2021
Meanwhile, Egypt’s President Abdel Fattah Al-Sisi released a statement praising and thanking the Egyptian team for their performance.
تحية فخر وتقدير لمنتخبنا الوطني لكرة اليد على الأداء المشرف أمام منتخب الدنمارك، فقد قدموا لنا مثالاً رائعاً على الأداء البطولي وروح القوة حتى آخر لحظة من المباراة.
— Abdelfattah Elsisi (@AlsisiOfficial) January 27, 2021
Egypt, which is hosting the 2021 Handball World Championship, had been hoping to reach the finals after a strong start to the competition. Egypt’s best ever result was in 2001, when they finished in fourth place.