2017 was a terrific year and the best to date in my racketlon journey.
During that season, I had the happiness of being on my first-ever racketlon podium. That was with my partner, Viki Szendrei, at the Swiss Open in the Mixed B Doubles in June.
The best was yet to come. By an incredible circumstance, I was able to secure Racketlon France a team at the 2017 European Championships. I was clearly the weakest player of that team and knew it. The other players were Nicolas Lemercier, Wilfried Leguay-Barrault, Helene Gentilhomme (Le Chemolle at the time) and captain Jean Michot. We also had Anthony Duthuille then to strengthen our team.
“This was one of the best feelings you can possibly imagine”
I went on to play three matches for my country. This was one of the best feelings you can possibly imagine.
In my personal second game, I went on to play Mikael Persson of Sweden 2, my favourite match. Persson is an A player, while I play D grade. I lost 1-11 in table tennis and 3-11 in badminton, although I did serve a short, cross-court ace in the very first point.
But my best memory was coming into the squash. I knew Mikael was a good squash player. I battled as hard as I could and scored my second point on a backcourt backhand drop. However, I show the ball from behind me and could not see it. I didn’t hear the ball so I turned towards the players to know how it went and learn that I had won the point.
The squash ended in another 3-11 loss, but when I came out of the squash court, I received a solid round of applause from everyone. Hats off to Leo Ostborg, Ola Emriksson, Michael Persson, Emmie Danielsson and the rest of the team for a magnificent, fair display that still warms my heart to this day.
I finished my international career representing my country against Germany’s Korbinian Heim in the fifth/sixth playoff game. I did not register any wins during my three matches, but considering I was playing against A or B players, and I never got beaten to 0, I was satisfied. Against Korbi, my losses were 4-11, 4-11, 1-11.
Clement Lopez / Racketlon France
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