Simonet and Amorim earn best player awards in May
For the first time, two non-Europeans have scooped the EHF Player of the Month awards, after both were crucial in their respective team’s EHF Champions League titles. EHF journalists across Europe voted two players from Pan America as the best of the month in EHF competitions: Györi Audi ETO KC’s Brazilian left back Eduarda Amorim and Montpellier HB’s Argentinian centre back Diego Simonet.
Simonet: “I hope this has served a lot for the Argentine handball”
Simonet was extremely valuable for Montpellier throughout the season and rose to the FINAL4 occasion magnificently. He scored the deciding goal in the semi-final against HC Vardar in Cologne at the end of May, and his performance in the trophy match made it impossible for him not to be selected as the MVP of the FINAL4.
After Simonet suffered an ACL injury that forced him to miss the 2016 Olympic Games and then another that ruled him out for some months at the beginning of 2017, it was a dream for the Argentinian to come back and become the first from his nation to raise the world’s most coveted club trophy.
“I feel a lot of satisfaction. I can't believe what we achieved,” said Simonet. “I saw the Champions League on TV with my brothers, Pablo and Sebastian, and my father Luis, who played for Argentina in the 80's – and now having the chance to win it is incredible.
“I came to Europe to continue growing as a player and to be in the national team. Every day I did my best to improve. It was tough, many times I thought about giving up. To be here now, in the highest step of handball, and winning the Champions League, this is the biggest thing.
“I hope this will help many young people in Argentina to continue practicing handball and not give up, even if they go outside [Argentina] and have a bad time.”
EHF Players of the Month – May 2018: Male
1. Diego Simonet
2. Kiril Lazarov
3. Cyril Dumoulin
4. Nicolas Tournat
5. Vincent Gerard
Amorim: “This means happiness!”
Things can change quickly in handball – and they certainly did for Eduarda Amorim over the last few months.
Györ’s Brazilian left back missed the Women’s EHF Champions League Main Round after fracturing her right hand. But after not playing for months, Amorim returned to her best quickly and became one of the leading forces behind Györ’s successful title defence.
She scored 12 times in total against Buducnost in the quarter-final and was instrumental to the Hungarian side’s winning run at the EHF FINAL4 in Budapest in May. Especially her six goals in the tight final against Vardar (27:26) made all the difference for Györ.
“It means happiness! It was a great month for me and I believe for the team it was one of the best,” Amorim says about being awarded EHF Player of the Month for May.
“I could enjoy every moment of the FINAL4,” she says. “It was the same awesome feeling, like winning the first time.”
After recovering from injury and helping Györ also win the domestic league and cup, Amorim is currently getting some well-deserved rest with her family in Brazil.
“Soon I go back to Europe to enjoy the summer with my husband and friends. We will visit Greece first, then Ibiza,” says Amorim, who will play her 10th season with Györ after the summer.
EHF Players of the Month – May 2018: Female
1. Eduarda Amorim
2. Amandine Leynaud
3. Stine Oftedal
4. Nycke Groot
5. Andrea Lekic