Argentina missed out on taking part at the IHF Women’s Youth (U18) World Championship only once, in 2012, as they qualified for their seventh edition after securing the second place at the 2022 South and Central American Women’s Youth Handball Championship in April.
The difference between the gold and the silver medals was a single goal, as Argentina dropped their game against Brazil, losing 25:26, which meant that they finished second – two points behind Brazil in the final standings.
There is not plenty of experience at this level for Martin Duhau’s team, with the coach making two changes compared to the team that secured the silver medal in April, one of them being forced after back Luciana Martinelli suffered a serious knee injury a few weeks back.
The draw has not been kind for Argentina, facing three European sides, that are surely more experienced, in the preliminary round, but the South American side will hope to break the downslide trend displayed in the previous tournaments, which saw them finish 20th in 2018, the worst-ever result in the competition.
As things stay, Argentina will definitely rely on their back line, with Azul Spinelli, Martina Pilar Layus and Martina Tajes – their top three scorers at the 2022 South and Central American Women’s Youth Handball Championship – back with the side. However, the challenge will definitely be higher now than in April.
Key players: Azul Spinelli (right back), Martina Pilar Layus (centre back), Martina Tajes (left back)
Qualification for North Macedonia 2022: 2022 South and Central American Women’s Youth Handball Championship – 2nd place
History in tournament: 2006: 6th, 2008: 11th, 2010: 17th, 2014: 12th, 2016: 18th, 2018: 20th
Group at North Macedonia 2022: Group H (Hungary, France, Argentina, Spain)