World Championships Player Preview: The Flying Cordovas Aiming to Soar at the World Championships - The Handball Message Board

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[Luis-Cordova-1-300x169]Tucson, AZ, WPH Press, 8/8/18- The Cordova brothers have steadily risen the ranks on the Race 4 Eight pro handball tour, with both Luis and Daniel knocking off nearly all of the game’s top players, while both advancing to one Race 4 Eight final between April of 2017 and April of 2018. Known as the “Flying Cordovas” for their willingness to hit the deck with reckless abandon, Lucho and Danos blend a mixture of heart, speed, strategy, hops, power, offense, and defense to make them two of the toughest outs in the sport.

Lucho is going to win:

Lucho will be competing in his second World Championships, having played in his first as a 21-year old in Ireland in 2012. “This tournament means a lot to me,” declared Lucho. “Even though I went to the worlds in Ireland and I had a decent result, I was still young then and wasn’t playing close to the level I’m playing at now. I finished the season playing real well and I think I can do well at this tournament.”

[Luis-Cordova-Bio-Picture-2-3-300x143]Lucho is excited to play in what is arguably the strongest World Championship draw in history. “I think it’s great to be a part of it, to be one of the top players in one of the strongest tournaments ever is great. I feel this tournament is going to be a great one and I can’t wait for it to start. The two favorites have to be Killian, because he has been winning everything, and Brady because we all know what he is capable of doing.”

The elder Cordova relishes the opportunity to face new challenges in Minnesota. “I’m actually exited about having a chance to play new players. When I was younger every tournament I played I pretty much played a new player. Now, I know who I will play every time before the tournament and I have probably played every player on the tour three or more times so it takes some fun out of it. I think my approach will stay the same though. I might change my game if I see something is or isn’t working but I will start off the same no matter who it is.”

[LUIS-CORDOVA-8-300x169]Lucho will open against Ireland’s Ian Mcloughlin in the round of 32 and await the winner of Emmett Peixoto and Max Langmack in the round of 16, with a shot at the five-time defending world champion Paul Brady in the quarterfinals. “The first time I played in the World Championships I was young and wasn’t playing at the level I’m playing now. This time I’m going to the World Championships to win.”

Luis Cordova

Age: 9/13/1990

Height: 6’0

Hometown: Juarez, MX

Residence: Atlanta, GA

Strong hand: Right

Home Club: San Angel Athletic Club

Favorite athlete: Lionel Messi

Best/favorite shot: Right-handed right corner kill

Highest Race 4 Eight Ranking: #3

Strengths: Right corner kill with the right hand, back wall kill, court coverage, consistency

Summary: “Lucho” is the youngest player to ever finish inside the WPH Race 4 Eight Elite 8 at 21 years old in 2012 and has carried that tremendous start as a 21-year old to one of the most consistent careers on the R48 tour. Armed with one of the best right hands in the world, Cordova can end rallies from anywhere on the court with his stiletto right, even when his opponents know it’s coming. Cordova knows how to play against the best, as evidenced by his tour victories against Mando Ortiz, Luis Moreno, Sean Lenning, Allan Garner, and David Fink. Lucho makes up half of the “Flying Cordovas,” with both he and brother Danos earning their nicknames by diving, sliding, and flying all over the court to make outrageous retrieves

[Danos-back-wall-close-up-300x168]Danos looks to impose his game style in Minnesota:

Danos will be competing in his first World Championships in the open bracket at next week’s event, fresh off a finals and a semifinal appearance in the final two events of the 2017/18 Race 4 Eight season.

“The World Championships is one of the most prestigious tournaments, so I am excited to see the level that it will bring out in the players,” barked Danos. “The talented players in the draw is very inspiring. Seeing all the top-level players in the draw is also very humbling. There is nowhere to hide. That just gives me that extra motivation during my training. Every time I think about the tournament, I get this strong boost of energy and start feeling anxious. I just want to get in the court already.”
Just like his older brother Lucho, Danos sees Killian Carroll and Paul Brady as the players to beat. “Killian has been dominating the handball scene the past year or two, so I would say he is the biggest threat. Brady seems like he is in great shape and ready to compete so I am sure he will be a strong contender as well.”

[Daniel-Cordova_v1_current-300x198]Danos will likely face Ireland’s Diarmaid Nash in the round of 16, with the pair splitting their two Race 4 Eight matches in 2018. The winner of the Danos/Nash showdown will face R48 #1 Killian Carroll. “I have to focus on my game and not worry too much about my opponents. I want to be the one dictating the rallies and pull them into my style of game.”

Daniel Cordova

Age: 9/10/1992

Height: 5’10

Hometown: Ciudad Juarez, Mexico

Residence: Atlanta, GA

Strong hand: Right

[DANNY-CORDOVA-8-300x169]Home court: San Angel Athletic Club

Favorite Athlete: Usain Bolt

Favorite pre-match music: Electronic Dance Music

Best/favorite shot: right-handed pass down the left with reverse hop

Highest Race 4 Eight Ranking: #6

Strengths: Hop serve, two strong hands, hops during the rally, mental toughness, speed

[Cordova-brothers-pic-300x200]Summary: Danos burst onto the Race 4 Eight scene during the 2014-2015 R48 IV season, advancing to the quarterfinals in three of his first four starts as a qualifier and climbing into the Elite 8 after just five events. Daniel advanced to his first R48 semifinal at the 2015 WPH R48 IV Player’s Championship, clinching the 2015 R48 IV Rookie of the Year and solidifying his place amongst the game’s elite. Cordova combines a unique blend of power, speed, versatility, and hops with one of the greatest attitudes on tour to take down great players. Danos makes up half of the “Flying Cordovas,” with both he and brother Lucho earning their nicknames by diving, sliding, and flying all over the court to make outrageous retrieves. Danos is one of the game’s most exciting stars and regularly draws some of the largest galleries at virtually all of his R48 starts

Race 4 Eight pro player bios here

Race 4 Eight Power Rankings: HERE

To view the Men’s Open Singles draw at the World Championships, go HERE

To view the WPH World Championships preview, go HERE

Buy Team USA gear HERE

Broadcast links to watch the World Championships, starting on Tuesday, August 14 HERE

Follow the World Championships at wphlive.tv and ushandball.org

David Fink

WPH Senior Writer


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