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Daniels Diary

Daniel’s Diary: Handball European Championship Final here in Denmark

Hi All,

I hope you all have been doing well. Sorry for writing a bit late again but day were busy. Last Sunday it was the Handball European Championship Final here in Denmark. I didn’t get to see the final match live at the hall but we still watched it on a big screen here in school. The whole championship has been a success and it was great to be volunteering as part of the statistics team cause we got to take some photos with world class players.

Apart from that it has been snowing and freezing cold from almost Day 1 that I came back here after the Christmas holidays. Even though there is this bad weather here, we still have our cosy moments in assembly or other activities where we get to listen to some music, play board games or play some billiards in our free time. Classes have been going good also espescially Danish Team Coach Class where we had a short 45 minute presentation by Japan’s Women National Team Coach. Apart from that we also got out first task in Danish Team Coach Class which is doing a 24-hour based activities for a U/16 boys football team to enhance their individual capabilities with regards to mental capability, determination and self awareness. Also the aim of the task is to bring the group together and help in organising a mixture of hard and fun tasks for these young athletes.

In handball it has also been going good and apart from high level training at IHAA, I also had my official first game since I am back here in January after 2 friendly matches. Next Sunday we also have another important game and I am really looking forward and pumped up for it. Next week also a lot of the students will be going abroad on a ski trip but I am staying back in the school and we are having a different week here but it will sure be a fun one.

Lastly but not least, I know that the club especially the Ladies 1st Division Team will be having some changes but I am sure that they will continue to grow together and help each other out in their tasks and follow on the previous things that they have learned. On a personal point of view, I am also happy to be shortlisted for the Gieh l-iSport Malti through MHA together with official Alan Grima. This is a huge step for me and will try to continue on climbing these kind of steps one at a time. This would not have been possible without the help of the MHA itself who backed me up, the Sports Scholarship body for giving me the opportunity to be here in Denmark, Lara who has always supported me and my family and her family who in their own way have always set up a fire in me to continue and work hard in whatever way I had decided. Lastly but also mostly, I would like to thank my brother and mentor Joseph Tanti for always believing in me and giving me and this club that he founded all his best knowledge, experience and love. Surely his work can be surely seen and this is not only from a personal point of view but also from a Maltese Handball Association member.

This was it for this week and hope that you can have a good week-end and rest of the week where you can bring me some happy updates from our rock 🙂 From my end in a few weeks or months time I can also have some new and different activities going on and it would be great to see how you would my new stuff will be received.

Take care and Best Regards

Dani #12

Daniel’s Diary: Holidays in Malta and Back to Handball

Hi all,
It has been long time since my last write-up. Spending the holidays in Malta was fun and refreshing. Having a hot climate and some slight rain was relaxing. However, the holidays were not just this. I managed to make up and meet most of the people that I couldn’t see in the past 2 months. Seeing family, friends, my Luxol family and the Maltese handball community was nice and I could catch up with some things that I had missed.
Now that I am back here in the freezing cold days in Denmark I started again with the routine I had finished 1 month ago. Although I had trained a bit with my Luxol brothers and sisters, it was still bit hard to remove the rust after 1 month almost of holidays. However, I immediately started on the right step where the enthusiasm and level shown in the first week in the handball academy here in Denmark were great. This term almost all the Canadians have left back to Canada but there is still a lot of high level players that remained such as the Japanese, the British and 2 other Canadians. Apart from that the academy has been spiced up with some local Danish talent where we also have a U21 Icelnadic player and a 1st Division Danish player joining the academy. This is a huge boost for me and am willing to test myself to some of the upcoming foreign talent.
This year I am also in Team 5 in the general school teams and here we got a nice group that is making the general school atmosphere good. I also started training with my Danish club here, Skovbakken. I am really looking forward to start playing again here as I miss the playing minutes after a month’s stop.
Finally, this term also started on a positive note due to the European Championships here in Denmark. As a former handball academy student in the last term, I was invited with other student to volunteer as part of the statistic team where we are taking elaborate statistics of all the matches taking place in Aarhus, NrGI Arena. We are lucky cause we get to stay in the best seats in the arena and all our work is recorded on online team sheets and used by journalists and live on TV so it is sometimes also stressful not to make an error. However, also because of this we manage to meet a lot of world class players that are playing in Group C i.e. France, Serbia, Russia, Poland which will now be joined by another 3 teams who passed for the main round from the Spanish group. As you can see I managed some signatures and photos with some of the best players.
Anyway, wish you all the best for this new year that has started and hope that sooner rather than later, we shall meet agian.
Regards and all the best,
Dani #12
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Daniel’s Diary: Laser Tag, Ice Hockey and Handball

Hi all, 

Hope you had a fantastic week 🙂 Over here this week was a different one since a lot of guys went to La Santa, Spain on a sports holiday there. However, over here we still had a nice programme. Well as you well aware of in my last blog this week we had a friendly against a school team here in Aarhus. We lost the game but we put in a very good performance against a side which had an Under 19 world champion, a danish liga player for Skanderborg and some youngsters from the liga team of Aarhus Handball. 

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On Wednesday we had a cultural run where we ran for 5.5km with many intervals to learn and see some of the historical and cultural places in Aarhus. It was a nice run and we got to know more this city’s history though on  a personal note it is nothing to compare with our island’s culture and I bet that Valletta in 2018 will be a better capital of culture for Europe than Aarhus will be in 2017. Also this week apart from handball training, we had fitness and agility training where we had a hard and though workout doing both cross-fit and circuit training.

This week we also had fun playing laser tag and trying ice-skating and ice hockey. The 1st activity i.e. laser tag was quite good and our team managed a respectful 3rd place from 6 teams. However, I didn’t have the same fortune on ice. It was the 1st time for me and so I had quite difficult time. On the other hand it seemed that the Canadians had learnt how to skate even before knowing how to walk. They were rocking the arena and when it came to hockey (or as they say: haaackey) well they were outstanding. I had a couple of falls but we were given nice hockey wear and this made it less hurtful. Right now my mobile has broke down so I had to lend some photos and maybe soon I can also bring you a video 🙂
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On Wednesday, we prepared some games for children who are physically and mentally impaired that would join us on Thursday. When these children game they found an oasis of activities waiting for them and they spent 5 hours at the school of absolute fun. It was nice to see all the happy and smiling faces of these children and reminded that the true value of sport is to bring differences together and unite.
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On Friday I had a match with Skovbakken and after the match the school mates from La Santa returned to the school sharing with us there experiences. We also exchanged our experiences and the night chilled out. On Saturday, I had another game with Skovbakken which unfortunately we lost but I felt I did well. On Sunday the plans are a visit to the town centre as I have a full free day.
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Hope all of you are ok and that you are having a good time back on the rock.
Wish you all the best and take care 🙂
Dani #12

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Daniel’s Diary: IK Skovbakken Debut and Lara Visiting

Hello Ladies and Gents,

It’s me once again and I must first apologize for not giving you any updates last couple of weeks. Well this was due to a very busy time table and though I tried hard to give you my update, I couldn’t make it. Well these have been some of the best weeks I had till now. The cooperation and synergy between the students here seems to continue to develop and there was such a nice atmosphere here. The peak of these couple of weeks was last Friday when Lara came to visit me for the weekend 🙂 It was such a lovely weekend and it had been something I missed a lot. Handball wise I also had my debut over here in Denmark where I played for IK Skovbakken. My performance was quite ok taking in consideration that it was my first match in a totally different game type. I felt well and I feel I can continue to develop and mature in the game. I also had some more games with Skovbakken now where I played both in Serie 1 and 3rd Division. I am aiming to continue on developing and continue to do well in my games and training. The possibilities here in Denmark are great and I am willing to continue to find my opportunities here.
A week ago, it started with kitchen duty as my students group has to help in the meals here. We are to prepare tables, forks, knives, cups and bring out food for all the students here. It is nice to help the others and work as a team as it facilitates the work and also being of service to others means that everyone cares for each other. Also on Wednesday we had a nice trip where I got to know more about myself and apart from that I appreciated more the small things in life. Before doing this trip however, on Wednesday morning I had training with SK Aarhus (ladies professional team). It was quite nice to train with them and to see a different perspective of doing sports as a job and not only as a passion or hobby.
This week some of the students went on a trip to La Santa, Spain and we who stayed here had a bit of different programme but still an intense one. Last Friday we had laser games and roller hockey which went quite well. In the weekend I had 2 matches with IK Skovbakken. I also am participating in Movember and although I felt weird, it is a nice thing to raise awareness on men’s cancer 🙂
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Monday started with a tough fitness and agility session where we had cross-fit and a 12 station circuit which was well prepared and physically stressing but satisfying to complete. We also had handball training and I feel that I am getting more used to the Danish way of playing handball where most of it is based on fast-paced handball and team moves. The plan of this week consists of a friendly against a school team here in Aarhus and some more physical exercises and handball training. Also on Wednesday we should have a run through the city of Aarhus where we should also have a cultural experience of the city which will be the Capital City for Culture in 2017 (a year ahead of Valletta). Other activities should be preparation of games for people who are less physically able and also training again with SK Aarhus ladies professional team.
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Well I am also keeping updated with you in Malta. I know that it started raining down there but I am sure it is not as cold as here. I am also keeping updated about handball and though the boys didn’t have the nicest of finishes to  the MHA Cup, I am sure that you will be able to bounce back and work hard to achieve more wins in the league as you very well did in the first league match. The girls I know that you will do well and give some good performances and I know that the nursery also started with their games so I wish them luck.
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Next week I will continue to update you more on my life here and will give a sum up of the first 2 months here in Denmark and how this week went. Well it is always nice to hear from you too also so I am open for anyone who wants to chat.
I wish you all the best and hope that we can hear each other soon.
Dani #12

 

 

Daniel’s Diary: First Month in Denmark

Well, time flies by and it is already my first month here in Denmark. Now that I got accustomed to the routines and the time table I have, I feel better and with the help of the other students here, I am able to express myself more both socially and on the handball court. This week was quite an active one and this was not only due to the training time table I follow but also due to a lot of other well-structured games and activities.

Training wise, this week we had training with a Men’s Liga Goalkeeper for Aarhus Handball and a 6-0 defence session with Skandeborg Liga Men Team apart from usual training sessions with Jan Poulsen, Jan-Lucas and Toyoki. It was an interesting mix of sessions where everyone could share his knowledge with us so that we can all improve. Apart from that, on Tuesday, I was in charge of the warm-up for the training as part of our Danish Team Coach Class practice. It was nice sharing also some of my knowledge with my teammates and I am glad I had some positive feedback from both players and the coaches.

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On the other hand speaking about club training, I had also some good sessions and though the language barrier sometimes it is still uncomfortable, it all turns out easily when we start speaking the handball language. IK Skovbakken (the club I am training with in the evenings) is willing for me to play with their 2nd team that plays in the 3rd division. However, if I prove myself and show up my talents, they are also looking forward to see if I can play for the 2nd division. This weekend I am not able to play since international clearance is not out yet. However, in the next weeks I will be able to play here and am really looking forward to have some competitive playing time here in Denmark.

Apart from handball, the week has been proceeding well so far. In Danish Team Coach Class we had a kind of competition week where we had to split up in teams and play a game called Go Tour. We had several diagrams printed out that they resembles streets or paths in the school area. We had to sign in at check points and finish again at the school. On Tuesday all teams started on a bad note where we walked 1.5km in the wrong direction although finally it was our team that won. On Wednesday and Thursday we had the same game but we weren’t on the winning side. On Thursday we had a different team game in the activity hall and the aim was still to build up a team and to see who is the analyst, who is the leader and other different types of characters within a team.

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During the week, the host team made a lot of activities too. These ranged from live café, to films, Champions League games mini-handball tournament and most of all a murder game. Being close to Halloween, after the pumpkin carving of last week, this week we had a game called Murder Game. Every student had another student’s name and he had to ‘kill’ him by just touching him and showing him the paper with his name. However, they had to be just them 2 together and there could have been no witnesses so everyone was running in the school in pairs so they don’t get killed. Well unfortunately, I was killed on the 1st day of the game 😛 Also the Friday night party had a Halloween theme but here the parties are not good as Malta style 😛

Well that was all for this week and wish you all the best 🙂

DANI #12

Daniel’s Diary: Family Day, Pumpkin Carving and Skovbakken Handball

Hello guys and girls it’s me once again…

Well this is my 4th update from Denmark and this shows that I am half way through my 4th week here.

This week I am starting to talk about the extra lessons we have which are not as such handball related and other activities I did during the week. Although the week was quite a normal one, we had a lot of different things and activities going on. Obviously enough, we had assemblies going on which have some good music and one of the bands who is formed up by the students performed their songs very well during one of the assemblies as one of the guys is soon leaving the school. This week also some Danish students were also teasing me about the 6-0 football defeat Malta had to Denmark.

Apart from that on Wednesday we had to do a very good clean up around the school and every Team of students was given a task and a place to clean. My team had to clean the Multiart room and although there was quite a lot of work to be done I must say that cleaning was fun. There were some bad TV sets that had to be demolished and staff that had to be thrown out for trash. We did our work and there was a lot of teamwork from everyone so that the task could be completed in minimal time. This cleanup was done in advance for family day which will be held on the first Saturday of November. Usually this day is more commonly used for Danish people that have their families visiting for a few hours in the school. However, I am lucky enough that in this day I will be having Lara and her brother joining me for the duration of the whole weekend 🙂

Thursday some of the guys also did pumpkin carving for next Halloween. I couldn’t make it as I had training but some of the pumpkin carved had some good creativity. I just wanted to post on some photos of the carved pumpkins made by the students here.

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Friday morning we also had cultural Friday. This consists of a 1 hour activity/lecture/presentation where we get to know more about Denmark and also the countries from which the students come from. This week it was Canada and although they had some technical defaults ( Canadians and technology don’t match 😛 ) they set up a very interesting presentation on their country and the province they come from, Alberta. I can just ensure 1 thing from what I could see: Canada is an amazing place and the Canadians (though they don’t have that much of an identity) are even more amazing 🙂

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Well as the past weeks I had my routine training which varied between the academy training and training with 2nd division club, Skovbakken. The week training started on a good note and in the first 2 days I had 1 gym session, 4 handball training sessions and a friendly match where I played for Skovbaken’s 3rd team and I faired well and we won 🙂

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On Wednesday I had to pass out on the gym session I had since I had to recover from the previous 2 days and also due to the fact that I had flu and was feeling sick. On Thursday and Friday I still had routine training sessions though my performance dropped due to fatigue and the flu. However, on a general note I am pleased with how the week has gone. This week Skovbakken shall decide whether they want me to join their club for this year and play in one of their teams.

Well I wish you all luck for this weekend’s games. I know these will be difficult matches but I am sure you will give it your all. I am always keeping updates over here and just know that you will always keep on having my support 🙂

Take care and keep on fighting for good results 🙂

Dani #12

 

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Daniel’s Diary: Cleaning Duty, Tournament and Blast from the Past

Hi all. Welcome to my 3rd week update 🙂

Last week ended with me and the other 2 Canadian goalkeepers being chosen as players of the week for the handball academy. It was quite a surprise and something I wasn’t expecting. The weekend was quite a relaxed one and very cloudy too. On Sunday we had 2 friendly games where we had 2 teams from the handball academy playing against teams from the local club of Skovbakken. We lost the games but however there was some good team play and every individual gave his best.

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Monday started with breakfast and then the team I had cleaning duty. I am in Team 9 and the teams have to follow a schedule of duties which differs from kitchen duty to cleaning and hosting activities duties. This week was our cleaning duty and I had to clean the ‘bunker’/cinema area. Early morning I also had my powersport (gym) session. I had to minimize a bit my workout as I had some shoulder pain but I still had a good session. Soon after the gym I had to wash and go for an early lunch as soon after we had to travel to Ollerup for a tournament between schools to cut a bit the handball routine. After a 2+ hour trip we arrived in Ollerup school.

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Although a bit isolated in the countryside, this school was aesthetically very pleasing and there was an immense amount of resources that we could use like a trampoline hall, climbing wall, etc… The first IHA students (the academy I am attending – Idraetshojskolen Aarhus) started their competitions in volleyball, hockey, football and other workshops. We had good results on the first day and soon it was time for the concert show from different schools throughout the night. There was some great talent where we had some of our teachers helping out to run the show and 2 of our students – Maja and Jakob showing off their musical talents. As the concert was over it was time to go to sleep in the big indoor hall Ollerup has. We slept on mattresses and in sleeping bags in a hall which holds 3 handball courts in it next to each other. Tuesday we continued with the games and I played some volleyball. It was fun and our school got to win the 11-a-side boys competition, 5-a-side girls competition and dominate the hockey tournament with 1st, 3rd and 4th place and only being so close and unlucky not to get all the podium. After the awards presentation we headed back to Aarhus where everyone was exhausted.

Orchestra Aarhus

Wednesday after cleaning duty, started again with gym session and I could do my work out to the full cause my shoulder was rested well in the previous 2 days. Then I had usual routine lessons where I continued to try and learn Danish and learn more about Danish culture. In night we had a 1 hour concert by 2 musicians which was really nice and we could listen to very good music. Thursday morning was the 1st session of handball for the week after Ollerup experience. Everyone was up for it and had a good session after the break we had in Ollerup. I also had Danish Team Coach Class and went to help a German student from school – Jan Lucas with a session he had to do for a class of 15 year olds that came from an outside school for a couple of days to witness the sports high school experience. In the evening, after dinner I had to go for Skovbakken’s training. It was a good training session and I got to know some of the guys more.

Friday is Game day and we had the weekly in-house tournament that we do between us academy students. After we went to the town centre for our cultural time where we got to here to the Aarhus symphonic Orchestra. It was good time and it was followed by an amazing dinner too. Later on today I will go to see the local ladies team – SK Aarhus play against China’s National Team as preparation for the local side’s league game tomorrow. This weekend looks to be quite full with lots of games that we can go to watch for free but you’ll know more about this next week.

Lastly I didn’t want you to miss this. I just encountered some term photos from the past years and guess what I encountered?! This is Joe back in 2003/04 for those who didn’t remember him in those times.I just want to send my regards to all and be sure that your comments, messages and other nice words you send are always appreciated. I want to wish you all the best and that you have a nice week.

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Take care & Best Regards

Dani #12

Daniel’s Diary: Settling In Denmark

So here is the round up of my 2nd week in Denmark.

I must say that I am adapting to the routine and I am settling in well with the mates here attending the sports high school. The weekend started at around 1400hrs where we have what is called the Go Weekend or Cultural Friday assembly. It was quite a nice assembly and we are always singing songs here in these assemblies both in Danish and English so when I’ll be back I’ll start singing for you ( Believe me you wouldn’t want it 😛 ) Anyways in the night there is a kind of in-house party and it was a superhero theme and so those who wanted could have worn costumes. Obviously being my first week I didn’t have anything prepared and I did like half of the people and just went there wearing as smart man 😛

Anyways Saturday soon rolled on and though being relaxed it also offered me some new amazing handball experience. In the afternoon some of us in the handball academy went to see SK Aarhus, a ladies team in the women’s elite division in Denmark. The level was very high and SK Aarhus dominated the game. This team is also coached by one of our academy coaches, Jesper Holmris, so it was nice to see him on the bench from an outside point of view. Also in this game a Hungarian player, Ramona Szabo featured. She used to be an academy student when Joseph was in Denmark so it was kind of an inspiration for me that here I can learn a lot. In the evening we also played some fun mini handball which I believe is a very fun and physical demanding game. Sunday was also quite relaxed and we had an individual technique handball session by 2 students who are developing their coaching skills here in the academy and then I joined the Canadians and 2 of the Japanese guys in a lunch in downtown Aarhus and then it was followed by a small visit to a bar where we celebrated Janel Rogiani’s (Canadian girl) birthday.

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The week soon started and obviously it was again hard work. During the week I had a test in the gym where I had to see the maximum weights I lift for different body parts. Now I also got my program and I can work on the physical aspect apart from the goalkeeper aspect. The week followed on with the normal 4 handball sessions and other classes such as the Danish Team Coaching Class and the Danish Language Lessons apart from the assemblies and other activities we have. Also this week I had a trial in a 2nd division club, Skovbakken where I trained with them both Tuesday and Thursday so we will see how I faired with them. On a positive note also, internet connection seems to have gotten better at least in the common area and I am very happy that most of you wrote to me and sorry if I sometimes reply late.

I wish you all the best for this weekend’s games and I am sure you will all do well. Just keep fighting till the end no matter what and keep believing in yourself and in your teammates. Hope I will receive some positive messages and feedback from your performances. I will be supporting you from here and I will be wearing the polo shirt you gave me for support

Daniel

Wish you all the best, loads of affection and best regards to all of you and your families…

Kom nu Luxol !! ——>   Come on Luxol !!

Dani #12

Daniel’s Diary: First few days in Denmark

So…. Here is a roundup of what has happened in the first few days of my experience. The trip to Denmark was quite a long journey and after arriving at Billund Airport, I had to walk for 45 minutes to get to a bus stop at midnight where I had to wait for 4 hours. However, on the way to the bus stop I immediately met some stuff that brought me memories of people in Malta. First thing I saw was Legoland which I know would bring some nice memories to the ladies that visited Denmark before.

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The bus ride to the Aarhus where the academy is located took 2 hours. The people of the academy were very welcoming and I immediately felt like I was part of the family. I had 3 handball training sessions till now and 1 gym session in the mornings and in the afternoons I had Danish Team Coaching Class and Danish Language Lessons…. From next week I will start my new routine where I will have more gym sessions and 4 handball training sessions weekly. Next week also I should be starting training with a local club so I can also increase my handball sessions.

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The other students here are fantastic although in the first few days I found it a bit difficult to integrate, since most of them were friends already however they were very welcoming and I already feel at ease with them.

Obviously I took all my special people with me to keep you in my heart and on my special board as you can see in the following picture.

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I wish you all the very best of luck for the next games and no matter what keep fighting till the end. Sending lots of affection from Denmark.

I wish you all the best and hope to hear from you too.

Daniel #12