by Simon Daish
The news was confirmed on Elizabeta Samara’s official social media pages, with just three days to go.
Samara was set to make her eighth appearance at the tournament, the Romanian looking to improve on her fourth place finish achieved at the 2016 Europe Top 16.
However, the Women’s Singles gold medallist from the Liebherr 2015 European Championships, Samara, who was entering the competition as one of the favourites is undergoing surgery.
Luxembourg’s Ni Xialian was the first reserve on the Women’s list but due to illness she is unable to attend and with no confirmation of participation from the next reserve player Iveta Vacenovska of the Czech Republic the invitation has been extended to another Romanian competitor Bernadette Szocs.
This will be the third Europe Top 16 showing in a row for Szocs, who will head to Antibes with the aim of setting a new personal best record having finished in 14th position at both the 2015 and 2016 tournaments in Baku, Azerbaijan and Gondomar, Portugal.