International selection for handball president Asa Mallon

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Asa Mallon Handball

Handball president, Asa Mallon, who was captain of the club last year, has been selected to play for Ireland’s under-20s in an international tournament in Kosovo.

Asa will compete in the International Handball Federation Trophy as part of the under-20 section between October 22 and 29, playing against Albania, Great Britain, Moldova, hosts Kosovo and many others.

Asa said: “It’s an incredible opportunity to represent your country; an amazing opportunity to play international sport. It’s great to pick up the profile of handball in Ireland and at the University.

“To be honest, it’s my first time playing at that level so I'm not sure who I'm going to be playing with at this point. I’ve never played with most of the lads. At a minimal level, I want to compete; I want to show what handball in Liverpool is all about.”

The opportunity to play for his country came about through being in Liverpool and playing handball for the club.

Asa explained: “I played for the Irish youth team last year in a tournament in Liverpool. They asked me to come along and I ended up training with the senior team over the summer and from that I got selected for the under-20s tournament in Kosovo.”

The University of Liverpool team finished fifth in the UK last year in what Asa describes as a “fantastic” achievement.

This year, over a hundred students attended taster sessions following on from a record-breaking year in terms of AU members.

Asa added: “This is excellent for us – we had an overall club-record high of 55 members last year so I'm hoping to get somewhere near that again. We were also the most improved club at the AU awards last year, so I'm just trying to keep the club going in the right direction.

“There was no team at the University ten years ago, but with the investment around the 2012 Olympics, there was money pumped into it. That funding stream doesn’t remain but it’s becoming a sport that’s becoming more popular all over Europe as well.

“We have a lot of international students come in and in semester one they want to still be playing the sport that they grew up playing.

“Our coach, Andy Clark, works with the GB setup. There’s certainly interest there and we just happen to be reaping the benefits.”

Training takes place between 5pm and 7pm on Fridays and 3pm and 5pm on Sundays, with matches mostly once a month and lots of opportunities to play in regional tournaments and the British University Championships.

Anyone wishing to get involved with the handball club should contact Asa by email on: hsamallo@liverpool.ac.uk