Gdynia to host "iron group" in prelims of 2013 European Championship
The 16 participating teams were assigned to the four preliminary Pools as follows:
Pool A in Odense (DEN): Denmark, Italy, Belarus, Greece/Belgium
Pool B in Gdansk (POL): Poland, Slovakia, France, Turkey/Latvia
Pool C in Herning (DEN): Finland, Serbia, Netherlands, Croatia/Slovenia
Pool D in Gdynia (POL): Russia, Bulgaria, Germany and Czech Republic
The hosting countries, Denmark and Poland, were set as Pool headers together with 2012 Olympic champion Russia and Finland before the start of the draw performed by ESOC Coordinator Willy Bruninx. The starting field of the European Championship will be completed next June via the third qualification round starring a series of home and away matches that will assign the last three spots available for the competition.
The winners of the four preliminary Pools will advance directly to the 1/4 finals to play there the winners of the Playoffs starring the second and third ranked teams of the various preliminary groups. The Playoffs and 1/4 finals will take place in Aarhus, Denmark and Gdansk, Poland, while semis and finals, scheduled for September 28-29, will be hosted in the splendid scenario of the Parken stadium in Copenhagen.