Meet the EHF EURO stars: Estelle Nze Minko

ER 2837 (1) EHF / Eric Willemsen

Meet the EHF EURO stars of the past and the present: The exclusive five-part video series Handball Portraits presents the leading players that impressed fans across Europe in the past, or will do so at the Women’s EHF EURO 2022 in November, with their dazzling performances.

Episode 1: Estelle Nze Minko (France).

She is a big star. She is the perfect team player, too.

Estelle Nze Minko is the kind of player each club or nation would wish to have on their team. The back, playing left or in the centre, has become the figurehead of a terrific generation of successful French players.

Nze Minko features in the first episode of Handball Portraits, a five-part series of short films featuring the biggest stars of the Women’s EHF EURO – both from the past and the upcoming 2022 edition in Slovenia, North Macedonia, and Montenegro in November.

Having made her debut at senior level at age 15, all Nze Minko wanted to do was become a handball star. At 18, she joined Toulouse in the French first division, ignoring people who said that she should not make such a move yet.

But she did, and succeeded. Then she appeared in the French national team, but played a terrible match and did not get another call-up for a year…

…which actually helped her a lot.

“Dealing with failure is what I need to be a fighter and to perform,” Nze Minko says in her Handball Portrait.

The rest is history, of course. Nze Minko embarked on a thoroughly successful journey with France, winning the 2017 IHF World Championship and their home EHF EURO 2018 the following year.

“When you achieve a goal that is so important for your sport, your country, your career, for all this, then you feel really proud,” Nze Minko reflects on that triumph in Paris.

While France lost the EHF EURO 2020 final to record champions Norway, Nze Minko had her personal strong showing rewarded with the MVP title. And winning the Tokyo Olympics in 2021 was up next for Nze Minko, completing her hat-trick of gold medals with the French team.

A club team player at record EHF Champions League winners Györi Audi ETO KC since 2019, Nze Minko has also developed a career path away from the courts.

Her own business sells the so-called V Box, a surprise box with little gifts inside: “It’s geared towards women’s entrepreneurship. I wanted to create a box for chicks like me. We want real stuff.”

Estelle Nze Minko, for the real stuff on and off the court.

All episodes of the Handball Portraits:

5 October – Estelle Nze Minko
10 October – Cristina Neagu
17 October – Montenegro 2012 team
24 October – Anita Görbicz
31 October – Ana Gros

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