"Missing out on the olympic games at the european championships has put an end to the topic of the national team for me," the 31-year-old captain of the DHB team announced. "After eleven years of handball without a break in the club and the national team, i have to give my body a rest. I will soon be 32 and want to play a few more years in the club. I don’t have any other choice," said the back of champion HSV hamburg as the reason for his decision.
The retreat of the currently most dazzling figure in german handball due to his height (2.03 meters) and his striking hairstyle comes as no surprise after the european championship in serbia, which was also personally disappointing for him. How deep the sting of the replacement sits with hens, who went through a crisis of form at the european championships and got unusually little playing time, he hinted at on his homepage. "It is a great pity that it (the resignation) has to be after such a disastrous tournament for german handball."
National coach martin heuberger expressed understanding for the resignation of his leading player, but also regretted the move. "It is a pity that ‘pommes’ has decided to take this step, he has filled the captain’s role in our team in an exemplary manner", said heiner brand’s successor.
Under the heuberger-vorganger the routinier, called "pommes" because of his white stripe in the irokesenschnitt, who scored 565 goals in 199 landerspielen for germany, celebrated his greatest successes: after winning the european championship title in 2004 and the second place at the olympic games in athens in the same year, the title at the home world championship in germany in 2007 followed as a crowning achievement. And with HSV hamburg, where he has now spent a few years playing handball at a high level, he celebrated a german championship, two DHB cup victories and the european cup win in 2007.
"German handball has a lot to thank pascal hens for," declared vice president horst bredemeier on behalf of the german handball federation (DHB). And announced: "we will give him a worthy farewell."A last assignment in the selection team is planned – it would have been the 200th one. For the powerful north german, whose mentor heiner brand explained: "I had wished him a gentler farewell from the national team than is the case after this european championship."