Mister 'Second Half' feels OK with his role

INTERVIEW: Danish right wing Lasse Svan Hansen talks to ehf-euro.com about always only playing the second half and about how to spend a long day before a match



Photo: Uros Hocevar

One thing you can be sure of, when Denmark are playing is that Hans Lindberg plays the first half and is replaced by Lasse Svan Hansen from the start of the second half.

It has been like that in all Denmark's matches at the EHF EURO 2014, and you can be pretty sure that it will be the same Friday night, when the Danes take on Croatia in the semi-final in Jyske Bank Boxen in Herning.

Svan had become Denmark's Mr. Second Half.

The 30-year-old right wing from German Bundesliga club SG Flensburg-Handewitt has had the time to get used to that arrangement, and he really feels okay with it.

“I feel fine about that. As you said, it has been that way in all our matches, and it has worked out just fine so far.

“It is nice for me to feel that confidence from Ulrik (Wilbek) that I am the one who is going to finish all matches so far, and I feel really fine about that,” Lasse Svan told ehf-euro.com.

Spending the first half watching

However, knowing that you are going to spend the first half on the bench and that you are not going to play until the second half, unless your teammate on the court gets injured must mean a special approach to each match.

“The way I do it is that I spend the first half watching, especially what is going on in my side of the court, in the attack as well as in the defence.

“Furthermore, I try to help Hans (Lindberg) as much as possible, for example if I make some observations which he can benefit from, and in the second half he helps with observations I can benefit from,” he explains.

The long wait

On every match day Denmark's match has been the late one, starting at 20.30 so far, and the throw-off for the semi-final against Croatia Friday night will even be half an hour later, as that game will be starting at 21.00.

That is a long day for the players to pass before the action starts.

“Of course it is a long time to wait, but it is a question of eating right, getting the necessary amount of rest and also of getting some fresh air in order not to get sleepy before the game.

“Obviously it is a question of finding the right balance and finding the mental level which fits perfectly for you, so that you feel physically and mentally ready when the match starts,” Lasse Svan says.

written by Peter Bruun / br