Article by GSP – Posted Friday, November 11, 2022 12:41 PM / Updated Friday, November 11, 2022 1:18 PM
Entrepreneur Bogdan Enoiu (63), one of the most important figures in the advertising industry of the past 30 years in Romania, recalled on the “Profu’ de Sport” podcast a funny episode spent during a friendly tennis match played by George Copos against Ion Țiriac.
A great tennis fan and close friend of influential personalities in Romanian sport, Enoiu took part, several years ago, in a unique tennis match between George Copos and Ion Țiriac. The challenge of the meeting? A car! Outright defeated by Țiriac, Rapid’s former owner found an “ingenious” method to trick Țiriac: he didn’t give him any of his luxury cars, instead giving him a Trabant.
Bogdan Enoiu organized, among other things, the Hagi Gala, the tennis tournament in Bucharest, but also the visit of George Bush Jr. to Romania.
How Copos gave a Trabant to Țiriac: “He got very angry with him”
– Bogdan, how did you end up organizing the Bucharest tournament?
– Țiriac also came to Gala Hagi. And he was impressed. “Well, who organized it?” You? Let’s talk”. He organized with Hărădău. I said “Sir, if you let me, I will organize it with pleasure” Him: “Yes, but first let’s play tennis”. He had played a car tennis match with Copos before.
– It was the goal.
– Yes, that was the goal. Tiriac always makes bets that he wins. He only lost about two with me. When Ponta lost to Iohannis, I took 1,000 euros from him and… I wanted to put myself in Țiriac’s shoes. I was also playing with Copos, whom I beat even in costume and with the referee Nicu Văcăroiu…
– On my word of honor.
– But how did you end up playing like that?
– I bet George that I would beat him in a suit. I who never wear one, I put on a suit, a tie, shoes and I beat him like that. And the former finance minister, Florin Georgescu, played tennis. He with Nicu Văcăroiu, who played very good tennis, and I with George Copos. Doubles match. And I slapped the prime minister on the head. Right here in front! That’s how it happened. It was calm there, the man fell to the bottom of it, that I was at the net. But he didn’t get angry, it’s character! George was already white. I said “why did I take you with me?”, like that.
– Back to the match with Țiriac.
– Yes, all things considered, Copos played tennis with Țiriac and lost, of course. And instead of coming with what he had, BMW or Mercedes, he came with a Trabant. And this one, Țiriac, got very angry.
– Țiriac’s mistake, that he did not score the bet from the start. He just said “a car”. And Copos brought him the Trabant.
– Well, he got terribly angry! Okay, George also liked the idea of Trabant, but Țiriac got angry.
In 2002, Enoiu organized “Rejucarea unui vis”, 30 years after the final lost by Năstase and Țiriac against the Americans, in the Davis Cup
– One would be tempted to say that George Copos did it to be funny, but he did it because he was miserly.
– It doesn’t matter for what reasons (laugh). And I arrive at my match with Țiriac. He says “let’s play a match, our referee is Titi Hărădău, come see me here, in Eliade”, where he had a house, with a very nice tennis court. It was Maurer’s house (no former Prime Minister in the 60s-70s) , on the edge of the lake. The stake was still a car. I had a yellow Opel, new, I had just bought it. And Tonton, as I call him, says “we play two out of three, but you give me 0-40”. I mean, it was impossible to beat him, I had already crossed paths with him. He had yet been number 7 in the world. He has a McEnroe backhand and a more jerky right, like in hockey, because he also played hockey.
– 20 years have passed since then.
– Please let’s enter the court, 6-3 quickly, because I have a weaker backhand. I was halfway through 3,000 matches with CTP, I was not strong. In the second set I started to make a strategy, or maybe he left me too, I can’t say, but I almost reached the tie-break. I had 6-5, he serves from 40-0, as we agreed, and when he throws the ball, “aaaaa!”, he pretends to stretch. I snapped, “come on, sir, what are you doing? Take the keys and I’m leaving.” But he loved me he never took my car, that’s why I say he’s a superman.
– And that’s how you became friends.
– Yes. After that I said come on gentlemen, let’s also go around Bucharest. And we remained great friends.
Read the other news from the “Profu’ de Sport” podcast
EXCLUSIVE / VIDEO “Did you use your connections in politics to help Edi?” Frontal question for Anghel Iordănescu, on the “Profu’ de Sport” podcast
SPORT PROFESSIONAL Bogdan Enoiu, in episode #10 of the “Sports Prof” podcast » Tasty stories about the Hagi Gala money bag, the Trabant donated by Copos to Țiriac, the 3,000 games with CTP and George’s bow Bush Jr.