ETTU | 17 Mar 2023
Matches, matches and more matches at the Europe Youth Series Croatia Open in Osijek
We are only five weeks away from the big premiere in Osijek. First ever event at the Europe Youth Series 2023 will be played from Wednesday to Sunday, 26th to 30th April 2023 in Croatia.
With more and more challenges in these days, ETTU stayed true to its efforts to invest in the future of European table tennis. The Europe Youth Series will bring the most needed opportunity for young players to play a lot of matches. The greatest value of the events is the fact that every player, regardless of their skill or level is guaranteed at least 7 to 10 matches. Not to mention mixed event that is actual more than ever by being part of Olympic program.
The City of Osijek stands behind the inaugural event with great enthusiasm proving once again that this town is deservedly named the City of Sports in Croatia.
"We have great support from the City and we hope that all the participants will enjoy their stay and play here. We are aware that this is the inaugural year and that pushes us to work even harder for this project to succeed. We hope we will manage to make this event successful to the point that it will become traditional in Osijek on this date in forthcoming years," said Tournament director Dragan KNEZEVIC.
As a national coach of cadet girls in Croatia, KNEZEVIC also looks at this event through the eyes of a person who is involved in the development of youngsters on daily basis.
"The greatest benefit of tournaments like this is the opportunity for the Under 13 and Under 15 to play the matches, a lot of matches to be precise. In these days a lot of national associations are faced with situations when they invest in players' participation at the tournament and in return youngsters are getting only the opportunity to play match or two before they are out. Here, even weakest player will play minimum seven to ten matches. Better players will have a chance, through singles, doubles and mixed teams to play up to 30 matches in 5 days," said KNEZEVIC.
Mixed team proved to be top hit in Podgorica last year.
"It is so interesting for the kids. They are very motivated to play those matches."
Speaking of experience, Osijek will be the host of Memorial "Matija Gregic" for the 24th time this year with 400 players from all over the region. In addition City organized the European Championships matches between Croatia and Serbia in Women's Teams Event and between Croatia and Poland in Men's Teams. The City also has vast experience in organizing volleyball, handball and basketball matches.
Club Vodovod Osijek who is behind this organization, is active on various tracks. They currently host six players and their family members from Ukraine.
"Last year I offered help to Ukrainian association and since then we had eight players from age 13 to 17, living and playing here. Right now we host three girls and three boys with their family members. We are very happy we could help," said KNEZEVIC.