Tennis: 15th year of pure excitement
Some sports are older, some are younge and some celebrate their EUSA anniversary this year in Coimbra. Tennis is in a group of sports that are in the last group because at EUG Coimbra 2018 tennis is celebrating 15 years as a part of EUSA family of sports.
After successfully organizing competitions in volleyball, basketball and football we decided to go one step further and include additional sport to EUSA family. So, in 2004 four more sports had their debut. They were badminton, futsal, beach volleyball and the sport we will present today, tennis. It was decided that the first tennis championship will take place in Touques, France from 13 to 17 of December.
First winners were Russian State University of Physical Education in womens and University of Rouen in mens competition. And from then on we have a real rollercoaster and every edition of European Universities Tennis event brings excitement and you cannot tell who will win until the very end.
In the last 14 editions students from 6 different countries won gold medals and universities from 7 different countries were bronze medalists, both in female and male competition. There is a slight difference with the number of countries whose universities had to satisfy with silver medals – in mens competition the number is 8 and in womens 6. That can show you what kind of excitement we can expect at the 15th anniversary of the sport.
Only two past winners of mens competition are coming to try to win the title again, and those are the teams that won last two editions of European Universities Tennis events. Erasmus University from Rotterdam, Netherland won gold at the last EUG in 2016 while University Camilo Jose Cela from Spain won it last year in Madrid. Strongest contender outside the two we mentioned is University of Innsbruck, Austria who finished second in 2016 and third in 2017. Others did not have the taste of victory yet, which will make them even more dangerous.
University of Bordeaux should be considered as a favorite in the female competition because they are the only team that previously won the gold, and they managed to do it twice – at European Universities Games in Rotterdam 2014 and European Universities Championship in Madrid 2017. They also won a silver medal in 2015 and a bronze in 2016.
Biggest competition for the girls from France would be students from University of Stirling, United Kingdom and University of Mainz, Germany, both former silver medalists and we should not forget Instanbul Aydin University from Turkey and University of Zagreb, Croatia that so far had to satisfy with bronze medals from EUSA tennis events.
Everything said guarantees an amazing competition and a lot of inspiration, quality and luck would be needed to bring gold from the European Universities Games in Coimbra 2018.