by Simon Daish
Ambitions Kept in Check?
Heading into the European Championships the Czech Republic were met with the difficult news that both Iveta Vacenovská and Zdena Blašková would miss the tournament. But with Renata Štrbíková, Hana Matelová and Dana Čechová all ready and waiting in the wings, the Czech team remains in a healthy position for the Championships in Budapest.
The Czech Republic Women’s Coach Paul Krpec will be hoping to see a positive outcome for his players at the Championships, but admits that his expectations for the Women’s Singles event will be kept in check.
“Talking about ambition before the tournament is always very difficult” said Krpec. “But in general, we can say that the Singles tournament will be difficult. Every victory over a higher ranked player will be a success for us.”
Antonin Gavlas and Renata Štrbiková (both CZE) are the reigning European Mixed Doubles champions (2013); three years later and Paul Krpec has set out his country’s target of enjoying more success in the Doubles categories, “Hana Matelová together with Slovakian player Barbora Balazova have a chance to advance to the final stages (of the Women’s Doubles event). The situation is similar in the Mixed Doubles, where Renata Štrbíková will play along with Tomas Polanski (CZE).”
“For me the goal to defend the gold medal in the Mixed Doubles should be taken very seriously” – Paul Krpec (Czech Republic Women’s Coach).
Krpec believed that following the busy summer schedule, which featured the Olympic Games, that some of Europe’s top players may have decided to give the European Championships a miss. However, it would appear that his assumption was incorrect with the likes of Han Ying (GER) and Elizabeta Samara (ROU) set to participate in Budapest.
“At a training camp in Düsseldorf, we asked our German colleagues if their best players will be missing in Budapest.” Krpec added, “I was a little surprised when they replied that they were going to compete and put aside the tiredness of a busy summer.”