Siblings on the national handball team, who are studying at SZE, aim for Olympic qualification

Born in Győr, Bence and Zsolt Krakovszki are two of the great talents of Hungarian handball. Last year, the twins were part of the junior national team that won silver at the World Junior Championships, and this January they played in their first adult world tournament, where the team achieved their biggest success in history by finishing fifth at the European Championships. The youngsters are students at Széchenyi István University and the institute is helping them to succeed in their sporting careers and in their studies.

The European Men's Handball Championships in January showcased a host of talented youngsters, including Olympic silver medallist Beatrix Kökény and the son of Olympic silver medallist Géza Imre, Bence Imre, not to mention the son of legendary men's handball goalkeeper Nándor Fazekas, Gergő Fazekas. On the two wings, we could see the twins from Győr, left winger Bence Krakovszki, who plays for Tatabánya, and right winger Zsolt Krakovszki, who plays for NEKA. Interestingly, the last pair of siblings to play for the Hungarian team were the Iváncsik brothers, also from Győr. The youngsters were welcomed by the management of Széchenyi István University on the Győr campus.

 "We got acquainted with handball in Dunaszeg, and then we played in Győr. At the age of fourteen, a new phase of our lives began, as we moved from our home to the National Handball Academy (NEKA) in Balatonboglár, where we became top players" - said Zsolt Krakovszki about the beginning. He added that they became national team players together, and today they are both members of the National Olympic Team participating in the qualification tournament in March.


Zsolt Krakovszki and Bence Krakovszki, in addition to their successful sporting careers, also consider it important to get a degree (Photo: Máté Dudás)

"Last year, I signed for Tatabánya from NEKA, which is in third place in the top division. It was a big change, maybe it's enough to say that we share a position with the former Veszprém player, the Spanish Cristian Ugalde. As my brother mentioned, we played together for many years, but now we are playing in two different teams in the First Division, and we played against each other the other day," said Bence Krakovszki.

The two youngsters said that the European Championships in January were a great experience for them and they are preparing for the Olympic qualification with high hopes.

"It's important for us to be able to focus on our studies in addition to the busy club season and national team appearances. We are both studying in Győr, specialising in recreation and lifestyle. We are grateful to the Széchenyi István University, because the flexibility of the management and the helpfulness of the lecturers give us the opportunity to combine our studies with our sporting careers."- they stressed.

"Heartfelt congratulations to Bence and Zsolt for their great success at the European Championships. We wish them the same success in the Olympic qualification tournament", said Dr. Bálint Filep, President of Széchenyi University. He added that the institution places a high priority on sport, and in addition to providing opportunities for students to participate in sports in the university's own association, it also cooperates with a number of professional clubs.

"We offer our sporting students a dual career path, helping them to study alongside competitive sport, as it is important that they can be equally successful in civil life after their sporting careers."- he underlined.

The participants of the event were: Tibor Csitkovics, CEO of Agrofeed Kft., Dr. Bálint Filep, President of Széchenyi István University, Zsolt and Bence Krakovszki, students of the institution, members of the national handball team, Rita Uhlig, CEO of Győri ETO UNI FKC, Noémi Takács Krakovszkiné, mother of the athletes, and Dr. Tamás Gyömörei, head of the University's Sports and Recreation Centre (Photo: Máté Dudás)

Rita Uhlig, CEO of Győri ETO UNI FKC, pointed out that Bence and Zsolt started from Győr and their bond has remained to this day. "They also help handball in Győr by showing young people the beauty of the sport at joint events and by setting a personal example for those interested in handball," she said.

Tibor Csitkovics, the main sponsor of the Győr club, the managing director of Agrofeed Kft., thanked the two athletes for their work and achievements, and presented them with a prize. "Győr has a committed community that is fighting to have a first-class team again, representing us in the top league. That is why we are proud of the youngsters who started their journey here and, together with several of their colleagues, are proving the strength of Győr's youth training," he said.

We can all cheer for the Krakovszki brothers soon, as the Hungarian National Team will play Tunisia, Norway and Portugal for the Olympic qualification between 14-17 March. The top two finishers from the qualifying tournament in Tatabánya will qualify for the Olympic Games.

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