Russia´s right-wing Emilya Turey speaks to ehf-euro.com following her sides´ 24:22 loss against Montenegro last night at the NRGi Arena in Aarhus, Denmark.
ehf-euro.com: Your national team is the youngest one in the competition. What is the mood like between the players?
Emilya Turey: There is a positive atmosphere between the players and even if there´s no medal at the end for our team, we are clearly establishing a good base for the future.
Our main goal is to have a top team at the London 2012 Olympics, but obviously we´ve also set a target at EHF EURO 2010 of fighting for medals and a semi-final place.
ehf-euro.com: Some of your experienced players, like Ludmila Postnova, Inna Suslina, and Elena Dmitrieva, are not participating at EHF EURO 2010. Did this come as a surprise to you?
Emilya Turey: It wasn´t a surprise to me, as Postnova and Suslina are both injured.
We don´t just miss their on-court experience, but we are also missing Inna´s off-court influence. She has always been an important person for us in the dressing room.
Although those players are missing, it gives new opportunities to our youngsters. After playing at several junior events, they can now prove themselves on the big stage of EHF EURO 2010.
ehf-euro.com: Your Coach Evgeny Trefilov always aims for victory and the gold medal. Do you feel pressure from this winning mentality?
Emilya Turey: I´ve been working and training under his guidance for eight years, so I´ve become very used to him during this period.
Actually, there is no big pressure at big events, as the trainer always gets from the players and the team exactly what he expects.
ehf-euro.com: After leading in the first half last night you lost your match against Montenegro. What happened?
Emilya Turey: The main reason I can see is that, right now, we have a young and inexperienced team. Compared to Montenegro, that´s a big difference, as they´ve got several experienced players in their squad.
In the second half, it was very hard for us to stop the Montenegrins from turning the match. Some of our players lack big-match experience.
We had errors in our defence, and also the team spirit of our back line was lacking.
ehf-euro.com: What was the coach´s reaction after the game?
Emilya Turey: No reaction really. He believes that the players must analyse their mistakes themselves.
ehf-euro.com: You face Croatia tomorrow and you´ll need a victory to retain any chance of a top position in the tournament. What are your thoughts going into this match?
Emilya Turey: For the current Russian team every opponent at the EHF EURO 2010 is a big challenge. It´s doesn´t matter if they are a big or small team.