Timo BOLL opened the space for Adrien MATTENETPhoto: Courtesy ITTF
ITTF Europe Top 16 Cup
Another withdrawal hit the ITTF Europe Top 16 Cup. After many changes in Women's Event, the first change affected the Men's tournament. Seeded no. two Germany's Timo BOLL cancelled his participation and he opened the space for Adrien MATTENET of France.
The situation is similar to Irene IVANCAN who wants to fully recuperate after a stubborn virus, the decision is made for reasons of prevention. The record holder in the number of European champions titles, who played his first international tournament after his knee surgery in the fall, last weekend at the German Open and in Berlin when he reached the quarterfinals against Vladimir SAMSONOV, does not want to jeopardize the positive healing process by overloading.
DTTB-Sports Director Richard PRAUSE said: "We decided after the German Open about the cancelation. The European Top 16 is a ranking tournament with the many games. It is better for Timo to use the time to continue his metered building training..."
Even without Timo BOLL and Irene IVANCAN the German Table Tennis Association will be represented at the European ranking tournament with the seven athletes Ruwen FILUS, Sabine WINTER and with three debutants. The four other Germans will be the defending champion Dimitrij OVTCHAROV, Bastian STEGER, last year's runner Petrissa SOLJA, WU Jiaduo and replacement for Irene IVANCAN, Kristin SILBEREISEN.
In the 2015 there had been seven DTTB starters who ended with three medals for the German Table Tennis Association: Gold by OVTCHAROV, silver and bronze by SOLJA by IVANCAN. For sports director Richard PRAUSE, the objective for Gondomar is clear:
"The Europe Top 16 is an important tournament and it is the second most important event in Europe after the European Championship. It is also an opportunity for the direct qualification for the World Cup and we will try with all to achieve the best possible places and of course to be also in the allocation of tickets for the World Cup. "
In Baku 2015 MATTENET was seventh and in Lyon 2012 he concluded the Top 12 between 5th and 8th place.