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Czech Republic

Although the Czech national team is not a one-man show, things would be much different if it were not for Filip Jicha, the first Czech to become World Handball Player of the Year. Jicha is the decisive scorer and also the base for their strong defence, together with Daniel Kubes.

Coach Vladimir Haber can also count on strong wings, but in the back court area Jicha is the key for everything. There have been many ups and downs for the team, particularly in qualification for World Championships, as they missed the last two tournaments in Sweden and Spain.

However, Jicha & Co. have made it to their fourth straight EHF EURO final tournament. Their best performance was in Austria 2010, when they finished eighth and Jicha was the top scorer and most valuable player of the tournament.

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Key Players

Filip Jicha

For many years Filip Jicha, the team's captain, has been the key figure in the Czech Republic's attack as well as defence.

The 2010 World Handball Player scored the most goals in the Czech EHF EURO 2014 Qualification campaign.

Not only powerful and dynamic, but at full form Jicha is near unstoppable as he pushes past various defences and he guarantees the goal.

On the club handball level Jicha has been playing for THW Kiel since 2007. His accolades with the German record champions include several national championships and national cups victories and also the coveted VELUX EHF Champions League trophy which he lifted in 2010 as well as in 2012.


Petr Stochl

At 37 Petr Stochl is still one of the main pillars in the Czech team. His strengths are the well-rehearsed cooperation he has with the team's defence as well as his acrobatic saves when it comes to close-range shots.

His efficient as well as effective style has made him to one of the Czech handball fan's favourites.

But Stochl, who was born in Pilsen and has played his country 168 times (as of October 2013), is not only a great goalkeeper but also possesses some poetic skills. Ahead of the EHF EURO 2012 he wrote poems which were published in Czech newspapers.


Pavel Horak

After having recovered from a string of injuries that stopped him in the 2012/13 season, Pavel Horak is destined to become one of the Czech key players at the EHF EURO 2014.

The 30-year-old is a strong back court ace who is well feared by any team's defence for his long-range shots.

In his early handball days he played for Czech side Banik Karvina. In 2009 Horak then joined German team Frisch Auf Göppingen with which he won the EHF Cup in 2010 and 2011.

Since the start of the 2013/14 season he plays for Füchse Berlin in German capital where he is teammate of Czech national team goalkeeper Petr Stochl.

THE COACH - Vladimir Haber

In October 2012 Vladimir Haber began his third stint at the helm of the Czech national team when he succeeded Martin Liptak.

Haber, who is a handball silver medallist with Czechoslovakia at the Munich 1972 Olympic Games, had already coached the team in the mid-1990s and then once more from 2000 until 2002.

His assistant coach is is Jaroslav Hudecek, the former Czech junior's national team coach.

After the successful qualification in June 2013 for the EHF EURO 2014 in Denmark, both Haber's as well as Hudecek's contract were extended.

Past Performance at EHF EURO Events

Year Event Host Place/Medal
1996 Spain 6th place
1998 Italy 10th place
2002 Sweden 8th place
2004 Slovenia 11th place
2008 Norway 14th place
2010 Austria 8th place
2012 Serbia 14th place