Montenegro women's national handball team
The Montenegro national handball team represents Montenegro in international handball competitions. Team was formed in 2006, and started playing in IHF and EHF competitions during the same year.
Montenegro played their first official match in November 2006 in Cheb and won against Bulgaria (32:28).
Women's handball team is among most successful national teams of Montenegro. They won Montenegro's first ever Olympic medal in 2012 by reaching the final. Same year, Montenegro was a champion of Europe.
|Nickname||Zlatne lavice (Golden lionesses)|
|Association||Handball Federation of Montenegro|
|Most caps||Jovanka Radičević (134)|
|Most goals||Jovanka Radičević (709)|
|Appearances||2 (First in 2012)|
|Best result||2nd (2012)|
|Appearances||4 (First in 2011)|
|Best result||6th (2017)|
|Appearances||5 (First in 2010)|
|Best result||1st (2012)|
|Last updated on Unknown.|
With the strong tradition in women's handball, Montenegrin team is formed at 2006, soon after independence. Strong base of Montenegrin team was ŽRK Budućnost Podgorica, a club with numerous European trophies, which produced many famous Montenegrin players.
Montenegrin women's team started playing in official competitions since 2006. First games they played on qualifying tournament for World Championship 2007 in Cheb, but finished at the second place with four wins and one defeat. Year later, Montenegro didn't succeed to qualify for European Championship 2008, after defeat in playoffs against Croatia. Same result Montenegro made at qualifiers for World Championship 2009, with defeats in the playoff against Sweden.
First significant success, Montenegro made at 2010. After qualifiers without any defeat, the team participated on European Championship 2010. At the end, Montenegro finished as a sixt-placed team and Montenegrin-side Bojana Popović was the third scorer of Championship with 46 goals.
For the first time, Montenegro played on World Championship at 2011. After passed group stage, Montenegrin team was eliminated by Spain in Round of 16.
Olympic silver and European gold (2012)Edit
Best year in the history of Montenegrin team was 2012. In August, Montenegro won silver medal at the 2012 Summer Olympics in London. In December, Montenegro became champion of Europe at European Championship 2012 in Belgrade.
At Summer Olympics 2012, Montenegro passed group with two defeats, but in elimination matches won against France and Spain. On final match, Montenegrin team was defeated by Norway (23:26). With the second place on tournament in London, women's handball team won the first Olympic medal for Montenegro since independence. Montenegrin players Bojana Popović and Katarina Bulatović were elected in the All-star Olympic Games team by IHF. Two players were top-scorers of Olympic tournament – Bulatović with 53 goals and Popović with 46.
At 2012 European Women's Handball Championship in Serbia, Montenegro won its first title on one of mayor handball championships. The team made score 5–0–1 in two group phases. In semifinals, in front of 13,000 spectators, Montenegro defeated home-side Serbia (27:26). In the big final, Montenegro again met Norway and won gold medal with win 34:31. Montenegrin players Katarina Bulatović and Jovanka Radičević were in All-star team. With 56 goals, Katarina Bulatović was the top-scorer of championship.
Both medals, in London and in Belgrade, Montenegro won with head coach Dragan Adžić.
After two successes in 2012, Montenegro was among main favourites before 2013 World Women's Handball Championship. But, after good performance in the group-phase, Montenegrin team was eliminated by Denmark in Round of 16.
Montenegro made significant result on 2014 European Women's Handball Championship. After good performances in both groups, the team played in semifinals, but defeated against Spain. At the end, Montenegro finished as a fourth-placed team.
Best result on World Championship Montenegro made at 2015. After great performances in groups, with notable win against Hungary (32:15), Montenegro eliminated Angola in Round of 16. But, on quarterfinals, Norway defeated Montenegro (26:25). That was the first performance of Montenegro in the quarterfinals of World Championship.
At their second participation on Summer Olympics, Montenegro disappointed in Rio de Janeiro 2016. With five defeats on group stage, Montenegro finished as a last-placed team without any point.
After Olympic tournament, Montenegro made big changes in the team, with many new young players, produced in ŽRK Budućnost. First main competition for new generation was 2016 European Women's Handball Championship, where Montenegro was the youngest team. With one win and two defeats, the team finished at 13th position.
|Qualifying matches EC/WC/OG||56||44||5||7|
Montenegro participated on three World Championships.
Montenegro has participated in four European Championships.
Head coach: Per Johansson
Since independence, Montenegro was led by three different coaches. During the first years, head coach was Nikola Petrović. After him, Montenegro was led by Gyula Zsiga and then by Dragan Adžić, who was most successful head coach of Montenegrin team.
* Data is only for official matches (qualifiers, European Championship, World Championship, Olympic Games).
Notable former playersEdit