by Ian Marshall, Editor
First held in 1997, always staged in Ostrava, it will be the 14th edition of the well-established tournament; play commences on Thursday 1st July and concludes on Saturday 3rd July.
David Jacobs, bronze medallist at the London 2012 Paralympic Games, will be once again on duty in men’s singles class 10, it is the same for Peter Palos in class 11, gold medallist in both Athens and London.
Notably, also present in the men’s events is Spain’s Alvaro Valera, two years ago in Ostrava, the runner-up in class 6 – he is most certainly a player with a worthy Paralympic record. In Sydney in 2000, he secured gold in class 8, in Beijing in 2008 bronze in class 7, in both London and Rio de Janeiro, silver in class 6.
Worthy efforts but arguably the most staggering is the fact that on Monday 1st January 2011, he rose to no.1 on the Class 7 listings, later in the year in October, when adjusted to class 6, he continued at the top of the order. Today he is still there! Listed at no.1, well over a decade at the very pinnacle.
Likewise, Belgium’s Laurens Devos, gold medallist in Rio in men’s singles class 9 is named on the entry list as is the host nation’s Ivan Karabec, gold medallist in class 10 at the Sydney 2000 Paralympic Games.
Alas for the now 40-year-old Karabec, there is no place later this year in Tokyo with the Czech Republic representation being Jiri Suchanek in class 2, Petra Svatos in class 3 and Filip Nuchazel in class 4. All appear on the men’s entry in Ostrava.
Meanwhile, in women’s singles events, Aida Dahlen, crowned European champion in 2015 in Vejle and 2019 in Helsingborg, defends her class 8 title as does Alexa Svitacs in class 9. In addition to her success in 2019 in Ostrava, she was a gold medallist in the same year at the Copa Tango in Buenos Aires.
A total of 73 men and 24 women representing 20 national associations will compete in Ostrava.