Ten Successful Romanians

1. Irina Nagy Klimovschi (1936-2001)


Medals

Gold at the WCh 1956, 1960 (11 players) and 1962 (7 players)

1960/1961 European Champions’ Cup winner with Stiinta Bucuresti

1963/1964 European Champions’ Cup winner with Rapid Bucuresti

Awards

All-Star goalkeeper WCh 1956 and 1960

Club teams

Progresul Targu Mures, Stiinta Bucuresti, Rapid Bucuresti

National team

136 caps (2 goals)

WCh 1956, 1960, 1962, 1965


2. Mariana Tirca (1962-)


Medals

1995/96 ChL winner with Podravka Koprivnica

Awards

All-Star playmaker WCh 1995

Club teams

Rulmentul Brasov, CS Stiinta Bucuresti, Oltchim Ramnicu Valcea, Podravka Koprivnica, GAS Anagennisi Artas

National team

All-time top-scorer 335 caps (2043 goals)

WCh 1986, 1987, 1989, 1993, 1995, 1997

ECh 1996

Active

NO

* Interview with Tirca


3. Valentina Cosma (1963-)


Medals

1995/96 ChL winner with Podravka Koprivnica

Awards

Club teams

Terom Iasi, Oltchim Ramnicu Valcea, Podravka Koprivnica, ESC Yutz Handbal

National team

All-time third top-scorer 322 caps (980 goals)

WCh 1986, 1987, 1989, 1993, 1995, 1999

ECh 1996

OG 2000

Active

NO


4. Luminita Dinu (1971-)


Medals

Silver at the WCh 2005

2000/2001 and 2002/2003 ChL winner with Krim Ljubliana

2001/2001 ChL winner with Kometal Skopje

2006/2007 CWC winner with Oltchim Ramnicu Valcea

Awards

All-Star goalkeeper ECh 2000 and WCh 2005

Club teams

Oltchim Ramnicu Valcea, Krim Ljubljana, Kometal Skopje

National team

201 caps (9 goals)

WCh 1999, 2001, 2003, 2005, 2007

ECh 1998, 2000, 2002, 2004, 2008

OG 2000, 2008

Active

NO


5. Steluta Luca (1975-)


Medals

Gold at the Junior WCh 1995

Silver at the WCh 2005

2006/2007 CWC winner with Oltchim Ramnicu Valcea

Awards

Club teams

Oltchim Ramnicu Valcea, Dossobuono Verona, Randers, FCK Copenhagen

National team

All-time second top-scorer 223 caps (1013 goals)

WCh 1997, 1999, 2001, 2003, 2005, 2007

ECh 1998, 2000, 2002

OG 2000

Active

NO


6. Simona Gogarla (1975-)


Medals

Gold at the Junior WCh 1995

Silver at the WCh 2005

Awards

Top-scorer of the ECh 2000

Club teams

CSS Focsani, Oltchim Ramnicu Valcea, Krim Ljubljana, SD Itxako, Gyori ETO, Rulmentul Brasov, Rapid Bucuresti

National team

93 caps (455 goals)

WCh 1997, 2001, 2003, 2005

ECh 1998, 2000

Active

Coach of HCM Ramnicu Valcea

* Profile on Simona Gogarla


7. Carmen Amariei (1978-)


Medals

Gold at the Junior WCh 1995

Bronze at the Junior WCh 1997

2002/2003 EHF Cup Winner with ESBF Besançon

2004/2005 and 2006/2007 ChL winner with Slagelse

Awards

Top-scorer of the WCh 1999

Club teams

Oltchim Ramnicu Valcea, ESBF Besançon, Randers, Slagelse, U Jolidon Cluj, Rulmentul Brasov, FCK Copenhagen, Viborg, Terom-Z Iasi, SCM Craiova

National team

All-time 4th top-scorer 182 caps (855 goals)

WCh 1999, 2001, 2003, 2009, 2011

ECh 1998, 2002, 2004, 2008

OG 2000, 2008

Active

NO


8. Cristina Varzaru (1979-)


Medals

Gold at the Junior ECh 1998

Gold at the Junior WCh 1999

Silver at the WCh 2005

Bronze at the ECh 2010

2005/2006, 2008/2009 and 2009/2010 ChL winner with Viborg

Awards

All-Star right winger Junior ECh 1998

All-Star right winger Junior WCh 1999

Top-scorer of the 2009/2010 ChL

Club teams

CSS Corabia, Oltchim Ramnicu Valcea, Rapid Bucuresti, Viborg, CSM Bucuresti

National team

178 caps (493 goals)

WCh 1999, 2001, 2003, 2005, 2009, 2011

ECh 2000, 2002, 2004, 2010

OG 2000

Active

Plays for CSM Bucuresti (ROU)

* Profile on Cristina Varzaru


9. Valentina Ardean Elisei (1982-)


Medals

Gold at the Junior ECh 2000

Silver the  WCh 2005

Bronze at the ECh 2010

2006/2007 CWC winner with Oltchim Ramnicu Valcea

Awards

All-star left winger at the WCh 2005 and ECh 2008

Club teams

Universiteatea Remin Deva, Oltchim Ramnicu Valcea, ZRK Knjaz Milos, HCM Baia Mare

National team

All-time fifth top-scorer 181 caps (735 goals)

WCh 2005, 2011, 2013

ECh 2004, 2008, 2010

OG 2008

Active

Plays for HCM Baia Mare (ROU)


10. Cristina Neagu (1988-)


Medals

Silver at the Youth ECh 2005

Bronze at the Youth WCh 2006

Bronze at the Junior ECh 2007

Bronze at the ECh 2010

2014/2015 ChL winner with Buducnost

Awards

MVP of the Youth ECh 2005

MVP and all-star left back Youth WCh 2006

All-Star left back Junior ECh 2007

IHF Rookie of the year 2009

Top-scorer and all-star left back ECh 2010

IHF World player of the year 2010

All-star left back ECh 2014

Nominated for the IHF World player of the year 2014

Top-scorer of the 2014/2015 ChL

Club teams

Rulmentul Brasov, Oltchim Ramnicu Valcea, Buducnost Podgorica

National team

111 caps (455 goals)*

WCh 2007, 2009, 2013

ECh 2008, 2010, 2012

OG 2008

Active

Plays for Buducnost Podgorica (MNE)


Some thoughts…

  • Longest NT career: Cosma 1986-1999.
  • One player has won an international cup with every team: Dinu.
  • Except for Nagy, all players have played for Oltchim Valcea.
  • Two players have never won a European Cup: Gogarla and Neagu**.
  • Two players have never won an NT medal: Tirca and Cosma.

The five all-time national team top-scorers are on the list: Tirca, Luca, Cosma, Amariei and Elisei.

In listing the ten most successful Romanians in the history of women’s handball, I have taken into account international medals, awards and recognitions, as well as the players’ contribution to the national team in  goals scored and matches played. But let us not forget the difference between our times and the previous era of handball: the IHF award only exists since 1988, the European Championship was first played in 1994, youth competitions were implemented only a couple of decades ago. In short, contrary to the heydays of Romanian handball in the 1960s, today, our players get plenty of chances to stand out.

* Selections and goals of all players until 2012 according to FRH. ** Eventually, Neagu won the Champions League with Buducnost in 2015.

Romania’s 2010/2011 Season

In Romanian handball, there is no ending to anything. We never end our past season, we never quite celebrate, we never praise our past deeds, we do not end contracts and we do not look forward to newbies. Five years ago we forged our plan – winning the Champions League – and set it in the stones of Oltenia.  A decade ago, we said we wanted to become world champions, meaning that all vulgar medals would be thrown upon receipt until gold would grace the Dacian landscape like in the old times.

Autumn is no time for handball. Teams are struggling to fuse, fans are getting used to searching for live streams, a preoccupied, yet dull atmosphere reigns in fora, as illustrious contenders quietly leave the ChL scene. Thank God for December and its glamorous European Championship … A weakened Eastern Europe had only Romania to save the day in the fight against the northern block. Taking advantage of a temporary amnesia that made them not so obsessed with gold any more, the girls won a bronze medal.  The score 16:15 proved, once again, that we are carrying the same matusalemic battle, started in handball’s  Iron Age.

The day of our ChL final, in May 2010, we said we wanted to win that aluminum cup … next season. Well, that next season came and went away in one change of a time zone, from Romania to … say Spain. There was no time for a Hungarian coach and his Turkish acolyte to take hold, no time to count left against right backs, no time for the recovery of our wounded Princess. And then, the impossible happened. Anja Andersen settled for Valcea.

What I recall are mostly emotions, pictures of an euphoric team and some outrageously clever press interviews. AND we got to see Elisei on back court positions, du jamais vu since Tadici, Anja’s biggest fan. We got to see Queen Yeliz from Skopje. We also saw a humble supporter offering his scarf to Anja. We realised that public opinion can be decent and can feed on joy, not only on failure.

Then, spring came, a silent one. Even the manager’s threats to cease payments did not cause a storm. Patience, patience and glamour will return to Romania eventually, another December is on its way. The only question is: will we be able to finish this year’s bad business in time?

Pics: Prosport & EHF

Top 5 Ladies Of ChL 2010/2011

What will they do next season? Who I expect will leave (->).

I will first mention some important figures that did not make the top.

Aurelia Bradeanu was a key player in her last year in Gyor, covering all back court positions.  At her side, Eduarda Amorim was cleverly used when a power shooter was needed. They were opposite types of attack players, Duda with a blunt shot, Aurelia with some spin in her wrist.

Olga Levina, better than words, better than Penezic, because she’s less of a queen and more of a bitch.

Camilla Dalby, the absolute right back, the first in years not painful to watch. No more of Jurack’s  heavy footwork, no more of Katarina ripping her own moves infinitely. It will be all about Dalby, Varlec (provided she’ll come back equally strong) and Sulland.

Soit and Larsen, not my personal favs this year, but getting on my nerves means they must have been good.

Most underestimated  players: Yeliz Ozel and Sanela Knezovic. Some 10+ mark to both of them for the unmeant fun style.

LW

1. Valentina Ardean Elisei (Rou)

2. Emiliya Turey (Rus)

3. Orsolya Verten (Hun)

4. Polina Kuznetcova (Rus)

5. Henriette Mikkelsen (Den)

LB

1. Bojana Popovic (Mne)

2. Alexandrina Cabral Barbosa (Por) ->

3. Andrea Penezic (Cro)

4. Tatiana Khmyrova (Rus)

5. Marija Jovanovic (Mne)

PM

1.  Anita Görbicz (Hun)

2. Karolina Kudlacz (Pol) ->

3. Andrea Lekic (Srb) – in Gyor

4. Isabelle Gulldén (Swe) – in Viborg

LP

1. Heidi Loke (Nor) – in Gyor

2. Ana Djokic (Mne)

3. Begona Fernandez (Esp)

4. Ionela Stanca (Rou) ->

5. Simona Spiridon (Aut) ->

RB

1. Katarina Bulatovic (Mne)

2. Anna Kochetova (Rus)

3. Linn Jorum Sulland (Nor)

4. Barbara Varlec (Slo) – taking a break

5. Grit Jurack (Ger)

RW

1. Jovanka Radicevic (Mne) – in Gyor

2. Nora Mork (Nor)

3. Carmen Martin Berenguer (Esp)

4. Linn-Kristin Riegelhuth (Nor)

5. Katarina Mravikova (Svk) – retiring

GK

1. Cecilie Leganger (Nor)

2. Silvia Navarro (Esp)

3. Katalin Palinger (Hun)

4. Katrine Lunde Haraldsen (Nor)

5. Jelena Grubisic (Cro) ->