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Wednesday, March 09, 2011
Forming an important part of their preparations for 2012, the week in Loughborough also gives the venue chance to hone their facilities which will be used as a holding camp prior to the 2012 Olympics.
The first match sees Italy and Turkey play each other on Thursday (1930 start), and it will be a match watched with interest by the GB team who will want to see just what they will face in the following days.
Great Britain are first in action on Friday (1930 start) when they play Italy, who only narrowly failed to qualify for the second stage of Euro 2012 on goal difference having beaten Georgia and Finland.
Finally, on Saturday Great Britain play Turkey, and will need to be at their best to beat a side who overcame Belgium and Luxembourg in the early stages of the 2012 European Championship last year.
Regular updates, match reports and previews will be available each day on www.BritishHandball.com as well as via the British Handball mailing list.
GUIDE TO ITALY
NANTES right back Michele Skatar was Italy’s top-scorer with 23 goals in three games in the qualifying stages for the 2012 European Championship, and he will prove a real threat to his rivals at Loughborough.
The 25-year-old has 61 international caps to his name - more than all but one of his team-mates - Pressano right winger Adriano Di Maggio having 66.
Also worth watching for the Italians is Demis Radovic, a 22-year-old left winger from Conversano who scored 17 in the Euro 2012 qualifying group.
And Tin Tokic is also named in their squad for Loughborough. Another 25-year-old, the left back with JJ Arrate scored 14 goals in their Euro 2012 campaign.
GUIDE TO TURKEY
LIKE Italy, Turkey are also a team with a talented player at right back - 29-year-old Ramazan Done who plays for Besiktas in the Turkish League.
He scored 24 goals in three games at the 2012 World Championships qualifiers and was the driving force behind a team who very nearly won their group.
And in the group stages of the 2010 European Championship he was Turkey’s top-scorer in all but one of the seven games he played in.
And Turkey’s left back Emre Keskin is also quite handy in front of goal, having scored 16 times in their three-match World Championship qualifying campaign.
Finally, Tolga Ozbahar is their most experienced player, the pivot having made 53 appearances and scored 12 goals in their World Championship qualifying campaign last year.