Number of WCh so far: 11
Best achievement so far: 1st – 2003
Qualified as: Winner of play off matches vs. Slovenia (54-41 agg.)
Coach: Alain Portes
For many years French women's handball failed to make its mark at international level, but once it happened the country quickly established itself at the very top.
Olivier Krumbholz took over as French national coach in 1998 and the following year the French team reached the World Championship final against Norway. The Norwegian favourites were forced into extra time to secure a home-win of 25-24. Four years later the French were world champions after a tremendous comeback in the final against Hungary and after that they have won World Championship silver in 2009 and 2011.
The current coach Alain Portes took over after Krumbholz, but what looked like a French demonstration of power in the first six matches at the World Championship in 2013 changed dramatically when Poland surprisingly defeated "Les Bleus" 22-21 in the quarterfinal.
The French style is physical in defense and patient in attack with Alexandra Lacrabere and Siraba Dembélé as the most effective goalscorers.