Emiel Schippers makes an excellent debut at the European Tennis Championships with 2x Bronze!
Fri 28 Jun 16-year-old Emiel from Ophoven has a promising future ahead of him ...
Today the European Championships are over for young Emiel Schippers (only 16 years old...), who had his first opportunity to compete at international level for Belgium. 
He did extremely well, as the results speak for themselves. In both the -18 year-olds and the adults, he was able to compete smoothly. His first step into the Deaf Sports world also made a big impression on him, the experience he gained at this European Championship will come in handy in the near future. 

Adults (single)

As Emiel does not have a ranking yet, he faced Frenchman Olivier Grave (ranked 6th on the world ranking!) in the first round.  He lost honourably 6-4, 6-0 after a great match. After the match, both the opponent and the audience were impressed by Emiel.
This eliminated Emiel from going for the prizes, but allowed him to compete in the retake or "consolidation round".

Semi-final : Emiel Schippers vs Marek Vaco (SVK and No.12 in world ranking) 1-6 and 0-6 
In the semi-final, the Slovak Vaco (who later won the final against No.1 European Championship Youth Maxim Geeraerts 6-4, 6-3) was 'outstanding' and that could be seen from his physique and age (1.5 years older) as well as his position in the World ranking. In that semi-final, Emiel was impressed by his opponent though, causing him to have a down day, especially his services did not pay off.

For 3rd and 4th place : Emiel Schippers vs Jakub Doucha (CZE) 6-4 and 6-2.
What we all hoped for became a reality with winning a bronze European Championship medal! 
Against the 5-month younger Doucha, Emiel was clearly the better tennis player, however, this Doucha as well as Emiel is a promising player for the future!

The next European U18 Championship will be played in 2026 and there Emiel could have a great chance of winning the title! 

-18 year olds (doubles) with Nicola Della Betta (ITA)

Quarterfinals : Emiel Schippers/Nicola Della Betta vs Alan Bury (POL) / Hlib Leonchuk (UKR) 6-0 and 6-0. 

Semi-final : Emiel Schippers/Nicola Della Betta vs Marek Vaco (SVK) / Vicente Chabo Chapa (ESP) 6-3 4-6 and 6-10 (super tie-break). 
The semi-final against the reigning world champions became a thriller decided in a super tie-break.

For 3rd and 4th place : Emiel Schippers/Nicola Della Betta vs Ethan Carter (GBR) / Charlie Denton (GBR) 6-1 and 6-2.
Emiel and his Italian colleague were clear favourites after the narrowly lost semi-final and they proved this by winning this bronze medal with clear figures!  
Emiel can look back with satisfaction on a successful European Championship with 2x bronze!

Under the guidance of coaches Luc Clauwers and Nico Van Wonderen as well as delegate Jan Van Den Braembussche, Emiel was able to leave a strong mark on this European Championship. Many players and coaches were impressed by his playing technique as well as his high level at such a young age. There is always room for progression: especially in storage as well as physical strength. 

All are working points for a promising future!
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