Mgr. Pavel Vecenovský, Phd fulfilled his positive relationship towards table tennis by teaching at the Faculty of Sports Studies and by leading the VSK University Brno club. Always happy and with a smile, you can meet him at Emil Open in the role of table tennis director.
Could you briefly introduce yourself and tell us something from your professional life?
My name is Pavel Vecenovský and I work at the Faculty of Sports Studies as the lecturer of the University Sport Centre. I am in charge of several PE subjects for students of Masaryk University. I am the sponsor of table tennis and I also teach floorball, badminton, football and futsal.
How long have you been playing table tennis?
I have competed in tennis since the youth categories. When I started working at the Faculty of Sports Studies I also offered to teach table tennis. Back then was table tennis part of the gym Pod Hradem and it wasn’t a separate subject. We agreed with the head of the department to expand the physical education offer with this subject. After some time, with a few students, we founded a table tennis club which has been part of the University Sports Club since 2007. And I am also in charge of this club.
How did you get to Emil Open?
Several directors of individual sport disciplines come from the Faculty of Sports Studies and I vaguely remember that it was Alena Skotáková, director of bocce at Emil Open, who approached me. The current director at the time announced that he had to give up the position. And when I think about it, it’s been 3 years since I took over. Due to coronavirus restrictions, my first year was postponed to September and in the end, the table tennis competition was cancelled due to the low number of athletes.
What do you do at Emil Open? What is your job?
In my role as director, my job is to ensure that the sports side of the tournament runs as it should. I am in contact with other people from the team, for example, I provide a referee. I have to prepare everything so that we can start competing.
Can you recall the most enjoyable experience from Emil Open?
I took away a nice memory of the opening ceremony at Pod Palackého Vrchem from my first year, even though it was cancelled. Last year’s opening was also very nice. It was at Svoboda Square and I had the honour to take the oath of referees. I like to remember the positive atmosphere from competitions. Some athletes may not have that many skills but in spite of that, they stay positive while playing and that’s the most important.
What is the most delicate situation you have been in during Emil Open?
There was this incident once, with a notice-board, organisational thing. We need a notice-board to keep the results posted and the one we had was not good for us. We found out the morning before the competition when we were preparing the sports ground. We had to act immediately. Thanks to the fact that there are many very helpful and creative volunteers at Emil Open, the problem was solved quite quickly.
What does the role of table tennis director give you?
Table tennis is very nice in one thing we can watch how it is possible to play this sport even with some limitations. In the competition, which we participate in with VSK University Brno, we meet various opponents in this category. There are girls and boys of different ages and one team even has a wheelchair athlete in the group. When I was offered the position of director at Emil Open, I was not at all concerned that the tournament was for disabled athletes only. I was looking forward to it. Table tennis is for everyone.
What do you wish Emil Open in the future?
Of course I wish for the European Youth Games for the disabled to continue, to not face any obstacles as in the days of coronavirus. I wish Emil Open the certainty that disabled athletes will have the opportunity to regularly meet every year at the European International Games. From the point of view of the table tennis director, I wish the tournament to grow larger, have more participants and become a stable part of Emil Open.