For the 500th on the bench of the Blue, Olivier Krumbholz counted on his team to seek a place in the final. For their part, the defending champions hoped to break the French invincibility. The Norwegians will have proven their status as the best nation in the world, by unfolding during the second period (28-20).
A first period full of suspense
The Norwegians engage and hit the mark quickly thanks to the arm ofOftedalthe Bleues finding themselves behind for the first time in the competition (1-2, 4′). Both teams are defending strongly at the start of the match and the French often make mistakes, finding themselves penalized with two 7-meter throws (5-4, 11′). The rear base of the defending champions quickly finds its bearings, in particular thanks to a good start to Stine Oftedalforcing a move to 1-5 in defense of the Blues (7-7, 20′).
This start to the match is very balanced between the two formations, the two teams do not leave each other and go blow for blow, the stakes being high for these two nations. The tricolor coach’s downtime did his players good, showing a newfound confidence. We also witness a duel between the two evening guards: Cleopatra Darleux is formidable on the wings while Solberg poses problems on shots at 9 meters (12-11, 30′). It was the Norwegians who finished ahead on the scoreboard at the break.
Then the Norwegian show
The Scandinavians come back from the locker room with increased intensity playing very quickly, as was the case during the last opposition during the World Cup. Orlane Kanor will take the first 2 minutes of the game, allowing Norway to secure the lead (14-13, 33′). The smile has disappeared on the Blue side, in addition to taking a yellow card for the tricolor coach, as the evening opponents are leading the dance at the start of the second half (18-16, 39′). Our French will need nerves of steel to last the last 20 minutes.
Several losses of balls from the Blues will offer the first real break of the match, with 3 lengths in advance for the Norwegians (20-17, 45′). The last quarter is unbreathable despite the lead of Nora Mork’s teammates which continues to grow, even if they are in the hard the French do not let go (23-19, 50′). The gap is now 6 goals in favor of the most successful nation in the world, the French chances dwindle as the seconds go by. The faces close on the side of the Blue as the Norwegians will have unfolded during this second period (28-20final score).
Olivier Krumbholz’s daughters will harbor deep regrets during this semi-final. The return from the locker room will have been fatal to the Bleues, who will have missed their chance, dominated by the teammates of Stine Oftedal, elected player of the match. The Norwegians were a step above this evening and will seek a ninth coronation on Sunday.