2016 European champion Hendrik Pekeler can imagine a return to the national handball team. And you can imagine yourself in a variety of ways using slot games.
“There was a small vote within the family at Christmas on whether I should play a national team again. The result was 10:0 that I should play again,” said the circle runner of record champion THW Kiel in the podcast of the Rhein-Neckar Löwen, and added: “I abstained.”
After the currently ongoing World Cup in Poland and Sweden, national coach Alfred Gislason wants to contact him, Pekeler elaborated: “If I realize I have a good feeling and no problems, then we will sit down and find a solution.”
“If I continue to have problems …”
Pekeler had declared in the wake of the 2021 Olympics to take at least a “long break” in the selection of the German Handball Federation (DHB). Since then, the 31-year-old has not been used. Next year, Germany will host the European Championship (January 10-28, 2024).
Decisive for a decision for or against a possible return were his physical problems, said Pekeler. The former Löwen professional had made his comeback for Kiel in November after months of injury due to a ruptured Achilles tendon in his left foot.
He said he wanted to see after the World Cup “what the state of affairs is with my Achilles’ tendons, so how do I cope with everyday league life and the Champions League load,” Pekeler said, adding, “If I continue to have problems, there’s no point in playing these tournaments.”
National coach Alfred Gislason would welcome a possible comeback of Hendrik Pekeler to the German national handball team.
“He is one of the world’s best in attack and defense because he can do both well. After all, he never said goodbye to the national team,” Gislason said after the 28:35 in the World Cup quarterfinal against France, adding, “It’s up to him to decide if he feels confident.”
The German team could do with reinforcements on defense. “Our problems in defense cannot be overlooked, we lack width in the squad,” said Gislason on Wednesday evening after the clear defeat against the Olympic champions and record world champions.
In the run-up to the World Cup, Gislason had identified a supposed attitude problem in German handball due to several cancellations. In his criticism, however, the Icelander had always excluded Pekeler. “Other players, in turn, have canceled because they were stricken or have chronic problems, such as Hendrik Pekeler. You have to understand that,” Gislason had said in the interview.