Olympic Games - Handball future 'reliant on UK Sport funding'

Lynn McCafferty might have finished playing handball but she admits her long-term future hinges on whether or not the sport continues to receive funding.

Handball - Britain lose to Italy in final Euro 2016 qualifier

View photo

Handball generic

The 33-year-old called time on her career after skippering Britain into their first ever Olympic Games this summer having made huge sacrifices, including a honeymoon after getting wed in 2007, to do so.

McCafferty, from Cumbernauld in Scotland, has finally fulfilled the post-wedding tradition, jetting off to Mexico after London 2012, while trying to promote handball in schools across the UK on her return.

British Handball will discover imminently how much, if any, funding it will receive from UK Sport over the next four years with McCafferty fearing the worst.

Only sports that demonstrate medal-winning potential will be backed and McCafferty, while settled short-term, insists not getting funding could have a major impact in years to come.

"Everything is pretty much on hold because we are in limbo. A few changes are getting made at board level and people leaving and people coming in," said McCafferty.

"I am now involved in trying to go into schools to promote the sport and maybe indirectly it will impact on me. I am targeting people who are quite young and school age which may have an impact in the future but not so much immediately.

"It would be a big shame especially as everyone is really motivated. It would just be a shame that there would be nowhere for them to gradually increase from junior level to senior level.

"I don't know long-term what I am going to do, I am taking each day as it comes. I had never been part of an Olympics before and I want to ride that Olympic wave for a little bit longer."

UK Sport are unlikely to look favourably on British Handball as both the men's and women's teams fulfilled a host nation place at London 2012 and then both failed to pick up a single point.

However McCafferty, who is still in touch with her former British team-mates, admits they cannot afford to think too negatively about the impending decision.

"I am still in touch with pretty much all of the team. We have a Facebook group and a handful of the girls are close and talk all of the time," she added.

"They are still training hard and hoping to get some funding. Despite what is expected we are still upbeat and positive."

View comments (0)