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28 days ago - 11/14/2019

Csaszar: “I can now enjoy playing handball confidently”

After a long and ongoing career full of waxing and waning, Gabor Csaszar has found his inner peace as well as joy and confidence in Switzerland.

The 35-year-old Hungarian centre back is having a remarkable season with Kadetten Schaffhausen in the VELUX EHF Champions League, highlighted by his 16-goal outing in a 40:28 win over GOG two weeks ago.

In a group D match crucial to their chances of reaching the play-offs, Kadetten will host Orlen Wisla Plock on Sunday evening at 19:00 CET (live on ehfTV.com).

In his career, Csaszar has experienced many different game styles and tactics as he played for clubs in five different countries, while he was part of the Hungarian national team which finished fourth at the Olympics twice, in 2004 and 2012.

His time with Veszprém and PSG Handball has taught him a lot about sport and leadership; now it is Csaszar’s time to pass on his knowledge as he has started coaching a youth team while still playing on the highest level in Europe.

ehfCL.com: You scored not only 16 times against GOG, but 41 goals in total in seven Champions League matches this season. Are you better than ever at age 35?

Gabor Csaszar: I do not feel that I am currently in the best form of my whole career but I am certainly in one of the best shapes ever. Actually, I am happy as I still enjoy this wonderful game and I can score that much. I started slowly in this season, I needed some time to be warmed up. However, after each match I felt more ready for bigger challenges. As I have entered the last year of my contract, I am grateful to have avoided injuries so far.

ehfCL.com: What is your secret behind keeping up your performance so well?

Gabor Csaszar: I do not have any secrets, I only enjoy my current role. The coaching staff always counts on me and as long as I can be efficient, help the team to win and the youngsters to reach the next level, I am glad. My tasks might be changing in the near future but that is life.

ehfCL.com: Hungary, Denmark, Spain, France and now Switzerland: what has been the biggest difference?

Gabor Csaszar: Not only in sports but also in life, the mentality is different. When I moved to Denmark at the age of 21, I was shocked. I still try to understand and gain advantage of that period. Of course, I have got many friends now and experienced a lot, which is now paying off. I can only appreciate the present. It also helps that my wife and our two children are here with me.

ehfCL.com: Where do Kadetten rank compared to your previous clubs?

Gabor Csaszar: The management and the squad are evolving. I think that we are mid-level in the Champions League, but we are dominant in the domestic league. The work is very systematic and it is good to see that the younger players are getting better and better. In my opinion, the results reflect our real strength well. For us, the main goal is to win the Swiss championship and perform to our best in Europe’s top flight.

ehfCL.com: In the tough Group D you next host one of your biggest rivals, Wisla Plock. How do you prepare for that match?

Gabor Csaszar: We had a very important game for the Swiss league during the week (Kadetten beat HSC Suhr Aurau 28:20 on Wednesday). For us, the priority is to win the Swiss league. However, we are very thrilled that we still have the chance to advance to the next stage in the Champions League. The match against Plock will be special for me as their head coach, Xavier Sabaté, used to be my coach in Veszprém.

ehfCL.com: The Men’s EHF EURO 2020 is around the corner and Máté Lékai may not recover in time from injury. Have you thought about wearing the national team dress again?

Gabor Csaszar: To be honest, I have not thought about it too much yet. I called Lékai right after he hurt his knee I can only hope that he will recover perfectly as soon as possible. If the national team needs me, I would certainly consider the possibilities. However, I would first ask my family. I have learned to enjoy the pauses. Also, the Hungarian national squad is full of young and talented players.

ehfCL.com: What is the biggest difference for you between now and the start of your career?

Gabor Csaszar: I had to learn throughout the years how to control my life. I am now more efficient and I would definitely tell myself to start learn a language before moving abroad. I can now enjoy playing handball confidently. Back then it was one of the biggest challenges.

ehfCL.com: What would you advise to the youngsters who once want to play at the highest level and to be as important to their teams as you are for Kadetten?

Gabor Csaszar: There are plenty of great examples and mine may not be the best. One thing is for sure: you cannot reach the top without hard work and humility. You should respect others as well as your body and your mind. Then you will see the outcome.

Author: Béla Müller / ew