For years Romania’s girls holds the top
Another gold for great generation
For years, without any exceptions, Romania is one of the biggest favorites for the title in girl’s events at the European Youth Championships. In Bratislava they won their 12th title in Junior Girls Teams. Lead by coach Petre ARNAUTU, Adina DIACONU, Diana LUPU, Andreea CLAPA and Alina ZAHARIA outshined all their adversaries.
In the final, in Bratislava, they halted great progress of Belarus team.
“It was very open match. Belarus showed very powerful performance at the tournament. I had doubts what to do before the ultimate stage. I had opportunity to choose between Andreea CLAPA and Alina ZAHARIA at position no. three. Belarus knows how to play against players with defensive style,” explained ARNAUTU.
Of course, playing in the final puts everyone under pressure.
“It was the same for Belarus team. You can read it from their team draw. They put Daria TRIGOLOS to play at the beginning against Adina DIACONU. Their first player Alina NIKITCHANKA played the next one against Dina LUPU. “
Adina won her encounter in straight match, but LUPU only managed to stretch NIKITCHANKA to four games.
“Against Russia, LUPU played perfect game. In the final she had not the same feeling, but you have to admire the level of play that Alina showed. She is very good chopper and very dangerous attacker. She is looking for smallest chance to attack. That is the reason why LUPU missed few high balls and top spins; simply she was afraid of Alina’s attacks.”
The third match opened the door for success.
“That match was important. That was the moment when we set the foundation for victory,” said ARNAUTU.” CLAPA started bad, she was 6:10 in reverse against Hanna PATSEYEVA. Luckily she managed to calm down, she regained her focus and won the opening game. The match lasted five games, but winning the first one, gave us important advantage. In proceedings she played more aggressive, she built up her confidence, improved her service game. Completely, with good top spins, her game went one level higher. ”
The clash of the top players from both teams came in the fourth match. Adina and Alina kept things leveled in opening games.
“It was very close game. They were both trying to keep the other one under control. Adina managed to put the ball on the table after Alina’s very aggressive attacks. “
At 2:1 for Adina and 7:2, NIKITCHANKA recovered to prolong the match to decisive game.
“It showed me how Belarus was determent to win the gold. They did not give up at any point. However, Adina’s experience prevailed. She won 4:0 in the fifth game and kept the difference until the end.”
Coach pointed that “old Russia’s school” is still very strong with Russia and Ukraine as an example of quality teams in Bratislava.
There are many good teams here, but our confidence and experience of playing in such many finals gave us extra quality.”
What is the main quality needed to be the part of this team, with so many players to choose.
“We have many national tournaments and we also follows all international results of our players. Personally, if the players show same level of quality I always give advantage to younger. That is the only way to build the team for future.”