by Simon Daish
Czech competitor Hana Matelova, 27, has been working hard preparing for the upcoming tournaments having spent time with the Czech Republic’s youth players before heading out to Asia for training.
“I started sparring with the junior squad before the European Youth Championships and then I flew to Asia for three weeks. I first spent a week in Taiwan and then two weeks in Hong Kong. I liked it very much, especially the camp in Hong Kong”, Hana Matelova.
First up for Hana Matelova is a trip to Panagyurishte for the Seamaster 2017 ITTF World Tour Asarel Bulgaria Open before the Czech representative competes in her home country at the Seamaster 2017 ITTF World Tour Czech Open in Olomouc.
Unseeded for the Women’s Singles competitions at both of the ITTF World Tour events, Matelova will have to negotiate qualification matches if she is to feature in the main draw.
However, Matelova has been named as a seed in the Women’s Doubles draw in Panagyurishte and Olomouc along with Slovak partner Barbora Balazova, who is making her return to the ITTF World Tour for the first time since the 2017 Qatar Open in February.
“Bara [Barbora Balazova] was hurt after the February tournament in Qatar and hasn’t played for half a year. Now she is only going to play doubles in Bulgaria and at the the Czech Open. So let’s see how we get on together”, Hana Matelova.
While the events in Bulgaria and the Czech Republic hold great importance with valuable World Tour standings points up for grabs, Hana Matelova’s focus is centred on the European Championships in Luxembourg where she is hoping to enjoy a successful campaign with the Czech national team.
“I will see how the Asian preparations have helped and whether I manage to enjoy a good tournament in Olomouc. At least it is good that we will be deployed in the doubles in Bulgaria and Olomouc. However, I will take both events just as preparation for the European Championships in Luxembourg. We want to tune in and try to fight the medal again”, Hana Matelova.
Source: Czech Table Tennis Association