M. Jurecki: I want to bring a bit of calm to the team
Less than three days are left to the first match of the VELUX EHF FINAL4, in which we will face the Hungarian Telekom Veszprem. On the result will depend whether we will be able to repeat the success of 2016. Although Michał Jurecki will not help his friends on the court, he will be close to the team, ready to help his mates at any moment. The captain of the team PGE VIVE Kielce during these intense days in Cologne wants to bring calmness to the PGE VIVE Kielce team.
PGE VIVE Kielce: You will not be able to help your friends on the court in Cologne, but being with the team on the spot you will still be a very important factor. How can you help the boys off the court?
Michał Jurecki, captain of PGE VIVE Kielce: First of all, I would not like to disturb them. As for the tactical solutions or what will happen in the locker room, it could happen that my influence would be negative. With such games there is a lot of emotions, a lot of information, really a lot going on. I would rather calmly approach it all and bring calm to the team, not to stimulate it additionally.
You and calm? It does not sound familiar.
If necessary, I can be calm (laughs)! I know that I am known for spontaneity, especially on the court, but every day I try to be completely different. It used to be hard for me, but now it seems to me that I control my emotions better.
This probably does not apply to matches, because as I watch you on the bench behind the players in the Hala Legionów, you jump or scream quite often, gesticulate to colleagues or judges.
Yes, at the matches I react like a real fan (laughs)! This is because I can not go on the court, so I try to vent my emotions in a different way. I live all the matches very much and I can reveal that the match in Paris was very difficult for me. I did not watch the other half of the practice, I sat by the side and just listened! Fortunately, the guys did a great job!
What do you expect in the semi-final against Veszprem?
Certainly many people will say that this is some rematch for 2016, but we do not approach it that way. A lot has changed, now it's two different teams and two different stories. Lot of things changes. Then, there were many experienced players, now we are under reconstruction. We have many young, talented players who during the season have already shown themselves very well. This resulted in a promotion to Final4, but remember that this team was not built up to be promoted this year, but to go very far in the coming years. When it comes to Veszprem, they had their problems. Contracting Vranjes and then releasing him, such passages with trainers are not an easy matter for the players. This year they did not have an excellent start, but they were promoted and it was a success for them. The group phase forgives mistakes, but play-offs no longer, you can stumble, but you have to do it in the next match.
And the VELUX EHF FINAL4 forgives mistakes?
The tournament lasts two days. If we catch a good wind in our sails, it can take us a long way. Talant always repeats - and he's right - that it's harder to get to Final4 than to win Final4. In fact, the history has shown that not always the faourites win.
How to spread out forces during these two days?
You always have to give one hundred percent, regardless of whether it is the first match or the second one. There is nothing to think about and leave reserves for the second game. If we give 70-80% at first game, it could be too little. I remember that when in 2016 we won the semi-final, the first emotion was happiness, I was glad that we won, but immediately it appeared in my head, that we had to rest now. After the last whistle, I went to Sławek Szmal and said, "Well, Kasa, now stay calm, another match in front of us". We did not enjoy with the fans for too long, I knew why I came there. In such tournaments you had to move quickly and start thinking about the second game straight away.
I guess it's not so easy to calm down when you win a game in Cologne?
It seems to me that it was easy for me. It was not the first time I was at a big event, I have already advanced to the semi-finals or the finals of big events. For me it was so much easier that I already had many successes in my account, so I was able to find myself. I came to Cologne for one purpose goal and after the semi-final goal was not yet realized.