Romania’s table tennis team was defeated by the Netherlands 3-1 on Sunday, in Group C of the World Championship in Halmstad, Sweden.
In the first match on Sunday, Romania – without Elizabeta Samara and Bernadette Szocs – failed to cope with the Netherlands’ team. The only point was won by Daniela Dodean Monteiro, who defeated Kim Vermaas 3-0.
However, the situation is quite strange, as the Romanian team was decided by the referee, leaving on the bench the best players, Elisabeta Samara and Bernadette Szocs. According to a release from the Romanian Table Tennis Federation (FRTM), the referee agreed on the team in alphabetical order.
FRTM says the competition paper had already been filled in by the referee, because the team was not present one hour before, as the freshly enforced regulation provides. Romania’s team coach claims the new regulation was adopted the evening before the day of the match, when the team was training. Furthermore, the Romanian federation hasn’t been officially informed on the regulation, only an email was sent on the FRTM’s website.
The Federation underscores that, even according to the new regulation, the referee could fill in the competition form only according to the position of players in the world rankings.
On Tuesday, the Romanian table tennis federation announced on Facebook that the protest and request for replaying the match against the Netherlands was rejected by the organizers of the World Championship in Sweden, with the score remaining 1-3.
In Group C standings, North Korea is first with 4 points, followed by Taiwan, Romania, Netherlands, Poland – 3 points and Czech Republic – 2 points.
The first three teams in the group qualify to the next round, while the group winners reach the quarter-finals directly. The teams on positions 4-6 will play for rankings 13-24.