Uncertain times, especially for cross-border partnerships in sports. At the end of may, a delegation of about 25 handball players from bad bruckenau was to leave for ancenis in brittany to visit their french partner club. When or if this will come to fruition in view of the current corona crisis, no one is able to estimate today. "There is now just as standstill as with us", says christian karl of the FC bad bruckenau.
Maybe we could say something more about it in april. In any case, he personally wished that there would be a return visit by the handball players from bad bruckenau. Because christian karl is the secret founder of the cross-country handball partnership, which had its first major highlight in bad bruckenau last july. "The whole thing actually started with me. In 2018, rather out of boredom, I looked on facebook and on the internet to see if our partner city ancenis had a handball club. And then I wrote to the french handball players via facebook in the summer of 2018 and made contact with them." After many exchanges of messages with jeanne perroteau, who is responsible for the facebook page of the handball players in ancenis, plans emerged for a visit to bad bruckenau. This was combined with a meeting of the partner cities in the summer of 2019. "Luckily, that worked out great right away.", christian karl looks back.
The people of bad bruckenau were amazed at the importance of handball in their neighboring country. "This is a huge club in ancenis. They have many more young people and teams than we have in bad bruckenau." For one day in the summer of 2019 everything revolved around the sport of handball, which has a long history in ancenis. In the friendly matches, the teams were mixed, so that handball players from bad bruckenau played in french teams and vice versa. The FC bad bruckenau puts in the handball sport great emphasis on the youth area. The ancenis handball club follows a very similar philosophy. The outstanding level of sporting training of all the french teams caused astonishment and recognition in bad bruckenau.
The town twinning between ancenis and bad bruckenau has existed since 1981. But the handball sport as a rough common ground was actually discovered only two years ago. There was no sporting meeting of the handball players from the two cities until the summer of 2019. The town twinning between ancenis and bad bruckenau has experienced both extremely active and weaker phases since its inception. The new friendship between the handball players has given an important impetus to the revival of the partnership.
But the four-day trip of the french to the sinnstadt was not only about the handball sport. The french guests have particularly fond memories of the park festival in the state swimming pool. With the help of french, english and german language, the communication with the more than 50 guests from ancenis went smoothly. There were also a few tranes to say goodbye to, because the handballers were on a wave right away. "Friendships really developed and we still have contact with each other today in a whatsapp group", says christian karl. "And because it was a great experience for both sides, the french handball players invited us to ancenis in may."
The fact that former bruckenau resident helena rinke lives in the vicinity of ancenis and also plays handball there made the handball partnership much easier to form. "In difficult organizational questions, she was an important contact person."