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Carom Billiard - 3-Cushion - European Championship Ladies - Antalya (TUR)

Therese in this form unbeatable in Europe

Posted by on February 5, 2020

Therese in this form unbeatable in Europe

© Ton Smilde
Therese Klompenhouwer after she took her last Dutch title: who can stop her at the Europeans

NIJKERK - The best year in Therese Klompenhouwer's billiard career turned into a year full of new challenges on 1 January 2020. The 37-year-old Dutch player, holder of all ladies titles in three cushion, is looking forward to the European championship, 11-13 February in Antalya, Turkey. For the first year, the Dutch lady enjoys a full-time professional status, no worries about work, days off to travel or lack of trainings. The champion is in super form, as she has shown in competitions for many weeks. ''At the level I am playing now, I cannot be beat at the European championship'', she sounds more heroic than ever.

The European title, the eighth out of eight participations, is the first major mission for 2020. Therese Klompenhouwer will stay in Turkey for 12 days: ''I will stay there during the European championship for national men's teams and then I start again in the World Cup, 17 -23 of February. I only go there to play billiards, no time for relax. I'm not the type to lie down on the beach, I prefer to watch billiards."

The flow during the last weeks, with averages far over one and around 1,500, give her the maximum confidence. Therese (4 times world champion, 7 times European champion, 12 times Dutch champion): ''It's been a great year allover, all titles, world title, European, Dutch, invited to Lausanne with the world top, for the Survival Masters. And besides, I was also knighted. So yes, by far the best year of my career."

The boost in her development was predictable. ''I feel that I'm playing better and better, much more stabile with more high runs and outliers. I can defeat more and more famous players, such as Korean Choong-Bok Lee in a World Cup and a strong Vietnamese. That made me come very close to the main tournament. I want to gradually grow, playing against stronger opponents."

''I have all I want now: a match table at home, a life as a professional, I give some training to young talents, I get training from Dutch federation coach Raimond Burgman myself, six hours a month and I can practice as much as I want. The focus is on making higher runs, position playing. Then, I automatically will play on higher levels. And it has been a great year in more ways. I lost one sponsor, but I got three new and very good sponsors back."

Therese Klompenhouwer realizes, surely, that most of the top players in ladies come from Japan and Korea and therefore don't face her at the European championship. ''I see more and better players coming from Asia every year. And the current top players are still improving. So there is enough competition in the world. But I know for sure that I am at my strongest at the World championship and that I can still beat them all with my routine, my class and my fighting spirit."

For the upcoming European championship, Therese made (by request) an estimate and analysis of her five most important rivals: Gülsen Degener (Turkey), Danielle le Bruyn (Belgium), Karina Jetten (the Netherlands), Güzin Müjde Karakasli (Turkey) and Estela Cardoso ( Spain).

Therese Klompenhouwer in a reaction speaking about her 5 opponents:

Gülsen Degener (Turkey, Istanbul 51 years)
Therese: ''Gülsen is one of my most important and strongest opponents in all the years that I have been at the European top. Mostly, she played well in the big tournaments, but won no titles. Actually, I think she plays better in Turkey than in Europe. For example, she has never played a World championship final match. She played a lot of strong tournaments, even won a Ladies Cup, but often was stopped in the semi-finals. And last year she played below her level at the European and the World Championships. That surely had to do with a foot injury. Gülsen is still the best in her own country and Turkey and the Netherlands are the best billiard countries in Europe. I think she is very motivated to do a shot at the title in her own country now. She was three times third in a World Championship, once second in a European Championship, so that is a very nice honors list. I will never underestimate her and try to find her weak spots. What type of player she is? Hard to say, not a real attack player, just decent, good, she can always be dangerous."

Danielle le Bruyn (Malle, Belgium, 62 years old)
Therese: ''Lots of routine, can play wonderful billiards. She took the Belgian title again this yar. In the Belgian competition she made 27 in 13 three weeks ago. That's enough to show her sudden peaks and great qualities. I know how dangerous she can be. Can't train very much, because she has a busy billiard café with lots of clubs, where the tables are full each night. If I look at her palmares, I see that Danielle was twice second in a European Championship and twice third. When I play against her, I know I have to be very focused."

Karina Jetten (49, Visé, the Netherlands)
Therese: ''My main Dutch competitor throughout the years has been slightly less, but is now better again than in previous years. At the Dutch championship she played very well for two days and seemed like a big competitor for me. Only the last day was not so good. Of all the players, she has been the most constant for a long time with 0,700 on average. She works full time, but I still see big progress. Is it because she trains with Roland (Forthomme), with whom she lives together? Yes, could be. I see a change in her game. She is always a player who likes to play long balls, but there is more variation now. I think it's very good for a lady working full time."

Güzin Müjde Karakasli (28, Istanbul, Turkey)
Therese: ''Nice, elegant player with a lot of talent. I played the final at the Europeans against her last year, when she was very good until the last match. Because I was 16-0 ahead in 4 innings, the opposition was broken quickly. I know she has a great job as a co-owner of a law company. But she has developed strong and fast in her sport. A young player, the youngest of my rivals, with a wonderful style, a good attitude and a fanatic player. If she focused even more on her sport, she would certainly be the best in her country."

Estela Cardoso (35, Cartagena, Spain)
Therese: ''One of the young talents in Europe as well. I think she comes from the well known Spanish training school. I heard about her that she trained for a week with the federation every summer, when she was young. And two weeks ago she had a training weekend at the Spanish school with other young talents. You can see it showing in her techniques and skills of her game. I once played against her in the final of the Ladies Cup and I know she can be a very tough opponent. Estela has the gift to suddenly make a lot of points in a few innings. She has shown her class by taking 8 Spanish titles so far. It's a pity for her further development that she can't train so much, because she has a job as a data analyst."

The 24 participants at the European women's championship (Céline Jacques is missing):

Therese Klompenhouwer (Nl)
Gülsen Degener (Tr)
Irena Hambalkova (Cz)
Steffi Daske (DE)
Marianne Mortensen (Den)
Danielle le Bruyn (Bel)
Christine Morel (Fr)
Estela Cardoso (Sp)
Ingrid Englbrecht (Aus)
Yenny Bajtner (Swe)
Angeliki savvini Skolarikau (Gr)
Karina Jetten (Nl)
Aysegul Fendi (Tr)
Charlotte Sörensen (Den)
Jaimie Buelens (Bel)
Ana Juarez (Sp)
Monika Steinberger (Aus)
Daisy Werdekker (Nl)
Guzin Mujde Karakasli (Tr)
Helga Mitterböck (Aus)
Joke Martijn (Nl)
Arzu Gök (Tr)
Monique Wilkowski (Nl)
Selma Sahin (Tr)



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