Don’t be indifferent – Kielce fight for the life of their coachArticle
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FEATURE: Polish champions doing everything in their power to support assistant coach Tomasz Strzabala's battle against cancer

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Don’t be indifferent – Kielce fight for the life of their coach

National team shirts of Julen Aguinagalde, Igor Vori, Hans Lindberg and Bogdan Wenta, autographed ball, footballers shirts, a Champions League medal and even NBA jersey – these are just some of the exclusive items possible to bid on in the charitable auction of Vive Tauron Kielce.

In addition, fund-raisers and an exhibition game of handball stars in mid-December ensure that everything is being done to help the seriously ill assistant coach of the club Tomasz Strzabala. Don’t be indifferent – check out what you can do and join in.

Defeat the illness

Tomasz Strzabala, the longstanding assistant coach of KS Vive Tauron Kielce has suffered from a hematological malignancy for a year and a half. After undergoing surgery it appeared that he had won his battle with the illness. However, the cancer has unfortunately returned.

The coach needs over 1,000,000 PLN for therapy in the USA. Thus the club has organised a wide range of activities for the fans. Plenty of clubs, including Orlen Wisła Płock and MKB-MVM Veszprem have already joined the campaign. 

Szmal: “He is a man on a mission”

Strzabala has always been bonded with Kielce. Over the years he earned the position of local handball icon. 

“He raised lots of kids at school, he had some nice results with juniors. Each player in the first team has good contacts with him as well. He is a man on a mission,” says Slawomir Szmal.

Kasa underlines that even though the coach knew about his illness some time ago, it did not affect his work. “He has been living with the diagnosis for a year and a half. If you did not know him, you would never say he was seriously ill. You could only observe the changes in his look.”

Aguinagalde: “He won’t deal with this alone”

The initiative quickly spread around Poland involving not only handball but the whole sporting community. Day by day the action was extending its coverage around Europe.  Julen Aguinagalde comments how important it is for the club.

“You know, in the team we’re trying to be like a family. He is a member and now he needs our help. He won’t deal with this alone.”
The friendly Spaniard adds, “It’s an occasion to get really valuable items. It is not often you are able to buy such shirts and help at the same time.

How to help

The easiest way to give your support for the coach is by transferring funds to a special account. Even the smallest amount of money means a great deal.

Account number - IBAN: PL 51 1140 2017 0000 4402 1262 0110

You can also take part in the auction held by the Polish portal. All of the items are accessible here.

The capstone of the action will be the match of Michael Biegler’s Poland against a world selection led by Dujshebaev & Cadenas together, which will take a place in Lublin on 14 December.

Szmal, Jurkiewicz, Aguinagalde, Cupić, Zorman, Nikcević, Bogdanov. Lijewski and Jurecki brothers – all of these icons will meet on one floor fighting for a common goal.

You can buy a ticket for the event here.

Don’t be indifferent – he’s worth it

The slogan of the undertaking is “Don’t be indifferent”. It is to show how sport can unite us. How we all can enter the court and play with one goal.

“Just imagine it was your family. I’m sure you understand our attitude,” stresses Aguinagalde. But if you are still unsure how to join the team, read the advice of Slawomir Szmal:

“It’s simple,” he smiles. 

“Just open up your hearts for this man. He’s worth it.”

Further information at

Photo credit: Grzegorz Trzpil

TEXT: Magda Pluszewska / cor