Here is another part of a Turkish table tennis fairy tale.
The 10th anniversary table tennis tournament took place in the Turkish resord of Bodrum this year. This tournament may become the last one. It mannaged to welcome just a few players, about 70 people. The most impressive team came from Russia and won all the top places.
1st place: Sergey Saveliev (RUS)
2nd place: Alexander Saveliev (RUS)
3rd place: Bondarenko Anatoli (RUS)
Some words on the tournament. On the one hand, there were no problems with the games and judging organization, but on the other hand, there was a huge problem with the location. It was not so easy to get up early, come and play only one game and then to spend 2 hours waiting for the bus to return to the hotel. Quite a challenge even for the young players.
Last year the sponsors promised a lot of improvements for this new 10th tournament. But as we have seen this year they made nothing but the promises. There were still no appropriate lights on the venue (even the lamps were the same) and the air conditioner still was not provided. A couple of times we even had to ask to wash the floor and the tables which were covered by sand and dust. The transfer problems had almost no solution. If last year all te group from St-Peterburg had to wait for more than an hour to get from the airport to the hotel, this year the bus was also late and, as we got to know later, the service was not free (200 Euros). Free accomodation was also promised for some participants, for example, for the last year winners, but it also turned out to be only a dream. All these promises failed not for the first time.
The new 5 star Turkish hotel was hardly similar to an average 3 star accomodation in a small European town. The food and the free beer made all the group complain on some stomach problems. But water-melons were traditionally exellent due to the season, they were red-ripe and sweet. An accident in the mountains should be also mentioned. The final day of our stay brought a huge fire in the mountains. The spectators spent about an hour on the seaside watching how the fire destroyed some houses on the top, and only then a plane and a helicopter of the fire service appeared to extinguish the fire .
The uncomfortable location of this resort of Bodrum, the expensive plane tickets and the fact that the tournament venue is 10 kms far from the hotel makes this tournament unpopular.
On the contrary another Turkish tournament in the place of Belek gains its popularity. This year it welcomed about 150 players and due to the responds of the participants the atmosphere was very pleasing and good conditions were provided both for games and rest. That’s why next year we are planning to visit Belek too. This place considers to be one of the best Turkish resorts and with a chance to play table tennis it sounds like nothing can be better.
P.S. Warning: fraudulent service and robbery!
Some people recommend using banking cards for payment in trips. But it is really very dangerous! As a fairly seasoned travelers, we can tell you that in the hotel and in a restaurant they may withdraw the entire amount from your card (such cases were in Turkey with the common cash theft right from the rooms and locked suitcases and bags).
Table Tennis Tournament 2011 (Bodrum, Turkey)
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