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Sep '12 12

First Round in the books at the 2012 European Championship



First Round in the books at the 2012 European Championship

The first round at the 2012 European Championship in Rotterdam, Haarlem and Utrecht in the Netherlands is in the books. Defending champion Italy as the lone undefeated team, host Netherlands, Germany, Spain, Czech Republic and Sweden advance to the second round, trying to reach the Gold Medal Game. Among the non-qualifies are also WBC Qualifier participants France and Great Britain, which didn’t survive the “pool of death” Group B.

The classification round to determine the final standings between 7th and 12th will be played on Wednesday. The second round starts on Thursday with another round robin. Italy is favored entering the next phase, holding a 2-0 record in their hands. The top two teams will advance to the Gold Medal Game, which is set for 1pm in Rotterdam on Sunday.

Attendance in the first round was kind of disappointing, as only games with Dutch participation draw good numbers (2,000 to 2,400). Otherwise they were between a low of 36 (Croatia-Spain) and a high of 535 (Germany-Belgium). And with the weather forecast being not that good for the remainder of the tournament, it will be difficult to see any improvement.

At least some of the second round games will be on TV, even if this means Eurosport2 (also NOS in the Netherlands). According to the TV listings for Thursday to Sunday, Eurosport2 will show Sweden-Netherlands (Thursday, 19:30), Netherlands-Spain (Friday, 19:30), Italy-Netherlands (Saturday, 19:00) and the Gold Medal Game (Sunday, 13:00) live from Rotterdam.

Final Standings First Round

Group A
1) Italy 5-0
2) Spain 4-1
3) Sweden 3-2
4) Greece 2-3
5) Croatia 1-4
6) Russia 0-5

Group B
1) Netherlands 4-1
2) Germany 4-1
3) Czech Republic 3-2
4) France 2-3
5) Belgium 1-4
6) Great Britain 1-4

Schedule Classification Games:
Wednesday, September 12, 2012
Game for 7th Place:
14:00 France – Greece (Utrecht)
Game for 9th Place:
14:00 Belgium – Croatia (Haarlem)
Game for 11th Place:
14:00 Russia – Great Britain (Rotterdam)

Schedule Second Round:

Thursday, September 13, 2012
14:00 Spain – Czech Republic (Haarlem)
19:30 Italy – Germany (Haarlem)
19:30 Sweden – Netherlands (Rotterdam)

Friday, September 14, 2012
14:00 Germany – Sweden (Rotterdam)
19:30 Netherlands – Spain (Rotterdam)
19:30 Czech Republic – Italy (Haarlem)

Saturday, September 15, 2012
14:00 Czech Republic – Sweden (Haarlem)
19:00 Italy – Netherlands (Rotterdam)
19:30 Germany – Spain (Haarlem)

Sunday, September 16, 2012
13:00 Gold Medal Game (Rotterdam)

Photo: Gregor Eisenhuth, www.eisenhuth-photographie.de

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