Andrei FILIMON and Elizabeta SAMARA of Romania regained the title at the ROMSTAL European Mixed Doubles Championships held this weekend in Buzau. In the final they overcame Turkey’s VANG Bora and HU Melek. They concluded the Event in the superb style with straight games victory in the ultimate stage 4:0 (11:4, 11:8, 11:7, 17:15).
Like year before FILIMON and SAMARA proved too strong for HU Melek. In Istanbul in penultimate stage Adraian CRISAN and Turkey’s player suffered by the hands of Romania’s champions. HU, this time with WANG Bora, tasted same faith. “It was harder then before because we had played in front of the home crowd,” said FILIMON.
SAMARA added: ”I needed this tournament to regain my self confidence, before the preparations for the Olympic Games.”
HU Melek and VANG Bora faced fearless Romania’s pairings in the semi final. Ovidiu IONESCU and Bernadette SZOCS led by enthusiastic crowd who exploded each time young players scored, proved themselves as adversaries worth highest reaches. They forced VANG and HU to give their best but at the end they had consolation only in bronze 4:2 (11:9, 12:10, 6:11, 9:11, 12:10, 11:9).
“They were good and we knew what to expect. We gave our best,” said Ovidiu IONESCU, who added that the hardest match in the qualifications was the one against Pavel PLATONOV and Alexandra PRIVALOVA that has launched them at the top position of the group.
Pavel PLATONOV and Alexandra PRIVALOVA of Belarus repeated the success from the last year and clinched the bronze once again. Like in Istanbul, they were halted in semis. This time instead of Aleksandar KARAKASEVIC and Ruta PASKAUSKIENE on the other side of the net were Andrei FILIMON and Elizabeta SAMARA. However, Romania’s pairings stood severe pressure from the Belarus doubles before they moved to the ultimate stage. Champions from Istanbul succeeded by narrow margin after the fierce battle full of twist and turns.
The day started with the all-Romanian quarterfinal duel; Andrei FILIMON and Elizabeta SAMARA confirmed their class in the match against Lucian MUNTEANU and Cristina HIRICI 4:0 (11:9, 12:10, 11:3, 11:8). MUNTEANU and HIRICI, gold medal winners at the European championships in Istanbul in 2010 as juniors, put reigning champions under pressure, but not enough to secure the medal rostrum.
The duel between Pavel PLATONOV and Alexandra PRIVALOVA vs. Adrian CRISAN and Daniela DODEAN gathered three Olympians at the same table, but the nation with fewer travelers to London – prevailed. Daniela and Adrian suffered by the hands of Belarus pairings 4:1 (6:11, 11:8, 11:7, 12:10, 14:12).
The experience of HU Melek who already has silver from Subotica and bronze from Istanbul, this time paired up with VANG Bora prevailed in the encounter against Lubomir PISTEJ and Barbora BALAZOVA of Slovakia 4:1 (5:11, 13:11, 13:11, 11:5, 11:6). Once again Turkey secured the medal.
On the last quarterfinal match Bojan CREPULJA and Aliz DJURCIK of Serbia failed to find the rhythm and game for Ovidiu IONESCU and junior European champion Bernadette SZOCS 0:4 (4:11, 5:11, 10:12, 6:11). From the start there was no doubt who will win this match.
(by Milica NIKOLIC, EWT)
Photo: the winners just after awarding ceremony (Photo Voinea CATALIN)
Tireless, always-in-action Beatrice ROMANESCU PR & Marketing Manager in Romania Table Tennis Federation, alongside President Cristinel ROMANESCU, took an opportunity not only to be the main force of the organization of the competition for the best mixed doubles in Europe but to gathers the most notable names from the history of table tennis sport in Romania. The venue in Buzau hosts the greatest names of Romanian sport. People who created rich history of one of the strongest nations in ping-pong gave special support to ROMASTAL European MD Championships.
Ella CONSTANTINESCU-ZELLER World doubles champion from Tokyo 1956 and three times semi finalists in singles in 1956, 1957 and 1963 is the most notable name at the list of distinguished guests in Buzau this weekend. CONSTANTINESCU-ZELLER was also ETTU Vice President and national coach.
“We are so proud that we create an opportunity for our biggest stars to gather. I was surprised that everyone who was invited accepted the invitation and came here. We had very emotional moments last night. Some of the guest has not seen each other for 10 – 20 years,” explained Beatrice ROMANESCU.
Serban DOBOSI long time national coach and now University professor gladly accepted the invitation, as well as Eleonora MIHALCA. MIHALCA was the runner up at the World Championships in Munich 1969. Magalena LESZAY reached Round of 16 at the World Championships in Calcutta 1975 and she is also here joined by Mihaela STEFF MERUTIU Olympic games quarterfinalist from Sydney 2000, quarterfinalist year latter in Osaka at the World Championships and Teams and Doubles European champion. From the same generation Adriana ZAMFIR is also present.
“We also have a lot of guests that made deep impact not only as a players but working in our Federation. They are all here. I am sorry that only our European champion and World Championships medal winner Maria ALEXANDRU could not make it. She is on physical therapy 600 kilometers from Buzau,” stated ROMANESCU.
In Buzau are also the players that made recent history. Otilia BADESCU and former Italian coach Mihai BOBOCICA. “We also have the best Romanian players competing here, so there is something for each generation.”
(by Milica NIKOLIC, EWT)
Photo: Ella CONSTANTINESCU-ZELLER (photo Voinea CATALIN)
There are few favorites for the title at the ROMSTAL European Mixed Doubles Championships (22.-24. June 2012), so the reigning champions Andrei FILIMON and Elizabeta SAMARA can look forward very hard weekend.
The winners from Istanbul last year will face challenge coming from 19 pairings from 7 countries, but they will also have a tough task to prove their supremacy against fellow countrymen. “The competition is fierce. It will be very difficult to regain the title. However, we are playing at home soil, in front of our fans and I hope we will give them opportunity to share another successful European championships with us. I hope we will do a great job,” said SAMARA.
Romania can count on Adrain CRISAN and Daniela DODEAN, Constantin CIOTI and Iulia NECULA, Ovidiu IONESCU and young star Bernadette SZOCS, Lucian MUNTEANU and Cristina HIRICI, as well.
“CRISAN and DODEAN, CIOTI with NECULA are the pairings who can reach the highest step at the medal rostrum. However, playing against every pairings in Romania will be very hard. Especially against the Turkish Chinese players HU Melek and VANG Bora, Russians, everybody…”
At the World Championships SAMARA suffered from the leg injury. “I am all right now; I can say that I am 100% recovered. We are both in good shape; we were practicing hard every day.We want to defend our title, and we will make everything that this happen. Every year is harder and harder, but if we watch the list, the great and good friends Sale KARAKASEVIC and Ruta PASKAUSKIENE are missing. That makes our job little bit easier.”
(by Milica NIKOLIC, EWT)
Photo: Andrei FILIMON (Photo Roscher)
It was easy day for favorites at the beginning of the ROMSTAL European Mixed Doubles Championships. Andrei FILIMON and Elizabeta SAMARA cruised through first two rounds leaving their adversaries no hope in Romania’s city of Buzau.
Reigning champions from Romania recorded two victories to secure the leading position after first half of the qualification stages. They overcame Federico PAVAN and Claudia CARASSIA of Italy, as well as Bojan CREPULJA and Aliz DJURCIK of Serbia. In that process they did not lose the game.
However, Alexandr KUCHUK and Victioria PAVLOVIC of Belarus are also in good shape. Their game ratio is 6:0 too, after duels against Italians and Turkey’s Gencay MENGE and Fulya YILDIRIM. Turkey’s pairings suffered by the hands of Serbia’s doubles latter.
In Group B Pavel PLATONOV and Alexandra PRIVALOVA of Belarus were forced to go full distance against LI Ahmet and Meral ALI ILDIZ of Turkey before they clinched the victory. Against Martin HANAK and Renata STRBIKOVA of Czech Republic they needed four games. Ovidiu IONESCU and Bernadette SZOCS of Romani had better game ratio. They overcame Czechs pairings and Russia’s Taras MERZLIKIN and Anna KOZLOVSKAIA and lose only two games. Russia’s parings suffered against Turkey’s doubles.
Seeded no. one and two in Group C are undefeated half way through the qualifications. Adrian CRISAN and Daniela DODEAN beat Italians Romualdo MANNA and Elisa TROTTI as well as Russia’s Viatcheslav KRIVOSHEEV and Olga BARANOVA. Lubomir PISTEJ of Slovakia and Barbora BALAZOVA accounted at Serbia’s pairings Dragan SUBOTIC and Aleksandra RADONJIC and they beat Italians as well.
In Group D VANG Bora and HU Melek justified their leading position by beating Marko PETKOV and Marija GALONJA of Serbia. They succeeded against Constantin CIOTI and Iulia NECULA of Romania too. It was not the case for the second seeded pairings in that Group. Evgeny FADEEV and Oxana FADEEVA failed to find the answer for good game of Lucian MUNTEANU and Cristina HIRICI. Romanian pairings shined in front of home crowd. They prevailed in all-Romanian duel against CIOTI and NECULA to find their way to the top of the standings.
(by Milica NIKOLIC, EWT)
Photo: Cristina HIRICI (Photo Roscher)
Top seeded pairings at the ROMSTAL 2012 European Mixed Doubles Championships, reigning champions Andrei FILIMON and Elizabeta SAMARA of Romania will face tough task even in the early stages of the competition in Buzau that starts tomorrow.
Romanian pairings are in the same group with the Aleksandr KUCHUK and European singles champion two years ago in Ostrava Viktoria PAVLOVICH of Belarus. Seeded no, two Pavel PLATONOV and Aleksndra PRIVALOVA will face Ovidiu IONESCU and Bernadette SZOCS of Romania in Group 2.
Another Romanian pairings topping Group C. Adrian CRISAN and Daniela DODEAN are in the same Group as Lubomir PISTEJ and Barbora BALAZOVA of Slovakia. In Group D at the top of the list are Turkey’s favorites VANG Bora and HU Melek. Evgeny FADEEV and Oxana FADEEVA aiming the quarterfinal place from the second position in the Group.
The competition starts tomorrow 14.00 local time with the Group stage. The Group matches will continue on Saturday, whilst the quarterfinal, semi final and final is scheduled for Sunday.
Photo: Viktoria PAVLOVICH (Photo Roscher)