France 'chose' its group at both Olympic handball tournaments. IHF

After the three women's qualifying tournaments, the International Handball Federation prepared the draw for both the men's and women's Olympic handball tournaments, with reigning Olympic champions and hosts France finally 'picking' their group.

Last week the IHF organised the three women's pre-Olympic tournaments to determine the 12 teams that will take part in the Olympic Games in Paris this summer. The 12 men's teams had already been determined after the qualifying tournaments in March

Curiously, France had the right to choose which group they'd play in - a traditional privilege in Spain, for example, for both the men's Copa del Rey and the women's Copa de la Reina. They opted to play in Group B for the women and Group A for the men, as announced by national coaches Olivier Krumbholz (women) and Gillaume Gille (men). 

In the women's competition, six countries had already qualified: reigning champions and hosts France, reigning European champions Denmark, world champions Norway, Asian qualifiers South Korea, African qualifiers Angola and Pan-American champions Brazil. 

In Torrevieja, Spain, the Netherlands defeated hosts Spain 26-27 in the final when both had already qualified; in Debrecen, Hungary, the 'Magyars' qualified together with Sweden; and finally in Neu-Ulm, hosts Germany booked their Olympic tickets together with Slovenia.

The groups for the women's tournament. IHF
The groups for the women's tournament. IHF

Both tournaments are divided into two groups of six teams playing a five-match round-robin format, with the top four teams from each group advancing to the quarter-finals. They'll play each other on a first-against-fourth and second-against-third basis for the four places to the semi-finals. 

Women's Tournament. Group A:






-South Korea. 

Women's Tournament. Group B:







In the men's competition, reigning champions and hosts France, world champions Denmark, Pan American Games champions Brazil, African champions Egypt, Asian qualifiers Japan and European bronze medallists Sweden have already qualified.

The groups for the men's Olympic tournament. IHF
The groups for the men's Olympic tournament. IHF

Three qualifying tournaments were held between 14 and 17 March. Hosts Spain and Slovenia qualified in Granollers, Hungary and Sweden in Tatabanya and hosts Germany and Slovenia in Neu-Ulm. 

Men's Tournament. Group A:







Men's Tournament. Group B: