In the difficult situation Czech team toughen the competition in Szombathely
Hungarian Youth Open
The junior and cadet competition in Szombathely, running under the patronage of the ITTF, has grown into one of the most significant international youth competitions in recent years, but this year we were happy to be able to organize it at all.
Initially, the organizers would have made an even larger-scale battle, it was planed that there will be eight countries at the competititon, but in the end only the Czechs came. Everyone arrived in Szombathely with a negative test result, and strict safety regulations had to be followed on the spot as well.
“There is a complete closure in the Czech Republic at the moment, so this competition was also the only training opportunity for the Czechs. They were the ones who stood by us all the way, giving us a chance to organize the event at all. Without them, this could have been a just a training camp for us” said Ottó TAMÁSI, the competition director and the HTTF’s youth project manager.
The Czechs represent good quality at the game, which is also shown by the fact that they won the majority of the events. One exception was the the junior boys’ singles event, in which Máté ÓCSAI and Erik HUZSVÁR played the final, and they were also the best in the team competition.
“There is a lot of training camps in the national team, we play a lot with each other, we cannot figure out anything new anymore, as so many times we play with each other on a daily basis. These games between us are like as if we were playing a training match” expressed Máté ÓCSAI, who defeated a Hungarian player not only in the final, but also in the semi-final (Dávid SZÁNTOSI).
“I am very satisfied with my performance in the quarterfinals and semi-finals, but in the final I could not perform the things I planned” revealed Erik HUZSVÁR, who finished as a silver medalist in the singles event.
The head coach of the junior boys could be satisfied, and next year could be even more promising, if there will be competitions, of course.
“The Czechs represent a good quality game, it was not easy to win the competition against them” started Miklós SOMOSI after the team competitions. “Csaba ANDRÁS suffered the lot regarding the fact that this year the youth European Championships or the World championships were not organized due to the virus situation, and his German team did not let him go to the Europe Youth Top-10 event. However, I have heard that the junior age limit may be raised by one year, and if it really becomes U19 from U18, then Csaba ANDRÁS and Olivér BOTH will remain junior players next year as well, and we could go with a very strong team to the European Championships or to any international competition.”
Ferenc PÁZSY, who is responsible for the cadet boys, was somehow also interested in the junior competitions, as Dávid SZÁNTOSI and Balázs LEI competed in the junior doubles’ event, and SZÁNTOSI also played in the junior singles’. Ádám CSERI teamed up with the Czech Vojtech SLANY, and they won the cadet boys’ doubles competition.
“We have to be happy about the little things, now it is that we could at least play against foreign players” declared Ferenc PÁZSY. “Although only the Czechs have come, but at least we could compete and acquire some more experience. It could be spotted that the boys lacked tournaments as it is the life of a professional player to train hard and then try to prove themselves in the tournaments. As a coach, I need to notice the positive and negative elements so that we can correct the latter ones.”
Írisz Laskai was also happy about seeing new faces, especially as they beat everyone in the doubles event with Adamik CSENGE among junior girls.
“It was pretty hard because we have not played decisive matches in a long time. It was a great motivation that this time we played not only against domestic players, but also against the Czechs” claimed Írisz LASKAI.
During the doubles competition played in a round-robin system, they defeated three Czech duos, and the double of Kíra BALOGH and Anna VOLENTICS.
“We practically grew up playing against each other, I think we know each other better than ourselves. We played against each other this week as well in the different events, but I am very happy that we were finally able to play with others” added Adamik CSENGE.
Ádám LINDNER could not count on his best player, Dorottya TÖLGYES, who had a match in Austria, but he still witnessed good performances.
“Csenge ADAMIK and Írisz LASKAI won the doubles event, which is a very nice result and they finished second in the team competition. Anna Volentics performed more moderately in both the team competition and the doubles, but she was able to improve in the singles by getting into the top four with besides three Czech players. Unfortunately, this cannot be said of Kíra Balogh, she played even more moderately compared to her abilities.”