20210618 RYT W19 Ehf Euro Anja Althaus
Respect Your Talent

Respect Your Talent is in full flow this summer

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The ‘Respect Your Talent’ programme has been in full flow during the various Younger Age Category events this summer – and is now spreading its wings even further.

Over the past six weeks, the successful EHF talent support programme continued at Women’s 19 tournaments in Slovenia, Italy, and North Macedonia, and Women’s 17 tournaments in Montenegro, Georgia, and Lithuania.

After each of the 408 games played at these events, a Player of the Match was named. And a total of 60 different players were included in one of the All-star Teams of the six events.

Programme promotes holistic development

Launched in 2019, Respect Your Talent promotes a holistic development of talented players’ careers – on and off the handball court.

In the programme’s pioneering approach, the world’s best handball players supported by leading field experts inspire and instruct young athletes covering topics such as dual career, mental performance, anti-doping, media, or sports law.

Also, the programme will serve as a central source of competence in the future, assisting the European handball family with training, research and network opportunities to foster sustainable pathways of aspiring players.

Range of top stars involved

As part of the RYT initiative, a range of top stars has been involved as RYT ambassadors in activity days at each of the YAC events:

  • W19 EHF EURO in Slovenia: Andrea Lekic (Serbia)
  • W19 EHF Championship in Italy: Katarina Bulatovic (Montenegro)
  • W19 EHF Championship in North Macedonia: Anja Althaus (Germany)
  • W17 EHF EURO in Montenegro: Anja Althaus
  • W17 EHF Championship in Georgia: Ana Gros (Slovenia)
  • W17 EHF Championship in Lithuania: Jelena Grubisic (Croatia)

The players who received a Player of the Match award had the opportunity to participate in the activity day, giving them the chance to meet and learn from the respective ambassador.

The Player of the Match Event activity is based on the question: What is talent? It is not all about training as a player for handball, but also about training as a person – ultimately to become a better player

Talent is precious. Talent is not to copy others. In EHF’s philosophy, talent is what a player makes of it – the main responsibility to become a pro player is in the players’ hands.

Other ambassadors of the RYT programme include Stine Oftedal (Norway), Johanna Ahlm (Sweden), Nerea Pena (Spain), and Kari Aalvik Grimsbø (Norway).

Gros, Althaus and Grubisic visited W17 events

After successful Respect Your Talent activity days during Women's 19 EHF EURO in Slovenia and Championships in North Macedonia and Italy, the programme continued during women's 17 events in Montenegro, Georgia and Lithuania. 

Around 150 players who received a Player of the Match award participated in RYT Activity day across three competitions. Young talents had a chance to meet and talk to the project ambassadors Ana Gros (Slovenia), Anja Althaus (Germany) and Jelena Grubisic (Croatia). 

Jelena Grubisic, who attended the RYT Activity day at W17 EHF Championship in Lithuania, expressed her joy about the project and the possibility to help young players: "It's an honour and a pleasure for me to work with young players and other ambassadors in a project like this.

"Lithuania was a great experience. I came one day early so I also saw one match. The activity day was great, we had a lot of fun. The girls were a bit shy at the beginning but in the end, we overcame that barrier and they had fun and were asking questions.

"When I was young we didn't have projects like this and I think this is an excellent programme for young players. It helps them develop not only as players but as human beings. Yes, sport is important but so is education. 

"Having professional players as ambassadors for the project means a lot for the players because maybe some of the ambassadors are their role models and I think it's easier for them to relate to us because we've already experienced what they are going through", concluded Grubisic. 

RYT at men’s handball for first time

The RYT programme is continuing at this month’s Men’s 19 tournaments in North Macedonia, Croatia, Bulgaria, and Latvia.

It means the programme is currently entering new territory, covering men’s handball for the first time.

The ambassadors involved in the activity days:

  • M19 EHF Championship in North Macedonia: Carlos Prieto (Spain)
  • M19 EHF EURO in Croatia: Vid Kavticnik (Slovenia)
  • M19 EHF Championship in Bulgaria: Laszlo Nagy (Hungary)
  • M19 EHF Championship in Latvia: Victor Tomas (Spain)

More details about the Respect Your Talent programme can be found at https://respectyourtalent.eurohandball.com/.

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