ITTF Europe Top 16 Cup
ITTF Europe Top 16 Cup
Friday was the dead-line for the invited players to confirm their participation at the ITTF Europe Top 16 Cup in Portugal’s city of Gondomar. The most prestigious European event will gather top players from 5th February to 7th February 2016.
The men’s list is identical to the European rankings. In Portugal will play 2015 champion Germany’s Dimitrij OVTCHAROV of Germany followed by Old Continent’s no. two, his compatriot Timo BOLL. Already at the position no. three, host nation has their challenger to the throne, Marcos FREITAS (Portugal), followed by Vladimir SAMSONOV (Belarus), Andrej GACINA (Croatia), Stefan FEGERL (Austria), Robert GARDOS (Austria), Panagiotis GIONIS (Greece), Tiago APOLONIA (Portugal), Pär GERELL (Sweden), Simon GAUZY (France), Alexander SHIBAEV (Russia), Ruwen FILUS (Germany), Kristian KARLSSON (Sweden), Bastian STEGER (Germany), João MONTEIRO (Portugal).
The reserves are: Adrien MATTENET (France), Patrick FRANZISKA (Germany), Patrick BAUM (Germany), Michael MAZE (Denmark), KOU Lei (Ukraine).
In the Women’s Event the situation is slightly different. The Top 16 is a qualification event for the World Cup which is a World Title event. Therefore, ETTU apply the ITTF eligibility rules for World Title events.
HAN and SHAN are not eligible. The same goes for FU Yu (POR), LI Fen (SWE), YANG Xiaoxin (MON) and SHAO Jieni (POR). All 6 changed nationality, being born Chinese. SHAO was registered when she was still under 21, she will be eligible for World Title events in 2020. The others were over 21 when they were registered for a new Association and can never play world title events for their new Association. Sofia POLCANOVA became eligible in August 2015, she is invited for the Top 16 as 1st substitute and will almost surely participate.
Therefore, the no. one seed in Portugal is Petrissa SOLJA of Germany, Europe’s no. two, followed by no. four in Europe LI Jie of Netherlands. At the list are also: Elizabeta SAMARA (Romania), LI Jiao (Netherlands), HU Melek (Turkey), LIU Jia (Austria), Georgina POTA (Hungary), LI Qian (Poland), Tetyana BILENKO (Ukraine), SHEN Yanfei (Spain), Irene IVANCAN (Germany), Polina MIKHAILOVA (Russia), Sabine WINTER (Germany), WU Jiaduo (Germany), Margaryta PESOTSKA (Ukraine), Leila OLIVEIRA (Portugal).
Host nation representative Leila OLIVEIRA will have very hard task – she is currently placed at the position no. 148 at the Continental list. This year’s winner in Baku LIU Jia is no. no. 6 seed.