by Simon Daish
Two wins for Men Shuohan and another success courtesy of Elena Timina helped TTV Lybrae Heerlen to a resounding 3-1 away win in the 1st leg to claim a commanding advantage in the encounter.
However, Fenerbahce Spor Kulubu produced a fantastic outing in the 2nd leg with victories for Nadezhda Bogdanova and Sibel Altinkaya seeing the Turkish outfit posting a 3-1 win of its own, bringing the 3rd round contest to a close with a final aggregate score of 4-4.
With both legs played out there was nothing to separate the two teams – both were matched in terms of individual matches, games and points won.
So according to tournament regulations the identity of the successful team would be decided in a unique manner: a coin toss conducted by referee Jos van de Berg.
If the coin landed with the green side facing up then TTV Lybrae Heerlen would advance, the red side favoured Fenerbahce Spor Kulubu – the flip resulted in green meaning the Dutch side progressed to the next round while the Turkish visitors returned home disappointed.
“I’ve played table tennis for more than 40 years but I never had to deal with a decision made by a draw. After almost five hours of playing in Istanbul and Heerlen there is no difference between both teams. I feel sorry for this unsatisfactory defeat for Istanbul, but I am very happy to reach the 4th round in the ETTU Cup.” Elena Timina
TTV Lybrae Heerlen will face French club CP Lyssois Lille Metropole in the 5th stage.