The ultimate TTCLM showdown: Orenburg – BorussiaPhoto: majo-foto.de.
This Friday (13h20 CET, live on LAOLA1.tv) returning final leg will be held in Russia, after 3:1 home win of German champion
After the returning final TTCLM leg, this Friday (13h20 CET, live on LAOLA1.tv, someone will become 11th time European club’s champion, Borussia Dusseldorf or Fakel Gazproma`s player Vladimir SAMSONOV who did it three times with German side. The ultimate MECL showdown will be held in Russian city Orenburg where these two title contenders closed the 2010/11 season (German champion took its last crown).
Borussia went to Russia with a big advantage from ARAG CenterCort, 3:1 (10:6), thanks to Timo BOLL who defeated two Top 10 players from ITTF World ranking list, Vladimir SAMSONOV and Dimitrij OVTCHAROV. Greek Panagiotis GIONIS prevailed against Alexey SMIRNOV, while OVTCHAROV brought unique point to his side, beating Patrick FRANZISKA. In the crucial moment for the 1st game’s outcome BOLL saved match ball in the fourth encounter against OVTCHAROV.
The finalists successfully defended their titles in the national leagues last Sunday and both are approaching to the upcoming meeting in a good shape. Three weeks ago it was clear that German club has to continue until the end of the season without Indian Kamal ACHANTA, due to injury that he got on the 2015 QOROS World Championships in Suzhou.
Borussia amazingly survived twice this season, first in the MECL and recently in the Bundesliga, thus they are now fully determined to avoid destiny of Pontoise and Saarbrucken who both missed a big advantages against Timo BOLL & Company in the MECL quarter-final and German League semi-final respectively. Dusseldorf`s team has eliminated the reigning MECL champion thanks to better set-ratio (1:3, 3:1, 17:16) while they did one more unbelievable comeback against Saarbrucken who won 3:0 (9:4) first leg (in the second one Borussia beat them 3:0, 9:3).
German side is the record holder, being 10 times European champion (6 Cup of Champions era, 4 MECL era). There is just one club in all sports who did it more times, CSKA Moscow in the volleyball (13 titles). Real Madrid also has 10 in football, basketball department of this Spanish club lifted the trophy nine times, Barcelona did it eight times in handball, Pro Reco, Mladost Zagreb and Partizan Belgrade 7 times in vater polo… On the other side, Vladimir SAMSONOV has the best individual table tennis score, fighting now for his 11th European title. Great Byelorussian took two Cup of Champions and eight MECL: 1997, 1998, 2000 with Borussia, 2001, 2002, 2003, 2004 and 2007 with Charleroi, and 2012 and 2013 with Fakel Gazproma Orenburg.
In last six editions the actual finalists were five times in total MECL winners: Borussia 2009, 2010 and 2011, Orenburg 2012 and 2013. French Pontoise beat all predictions last year, defeating Russian champion in the final.
The ultimate MECL match will determine the best individual score in the 2014/15 season. Timo BOLL enters upcoming clash with 15-2, whilst Dimitrij OVTCHAROV has 13-2. It could be expect that one of these two Germans will be a man of decision.
Men’s ECL final, 2nd leg (May 29th, 13h20 CET)
Fakel Gazproma Orenburg – Borussia Dusseldorf
Men`s ECL final, 1st leg (May 10th, 13h00 CET)
Borussia Dusseldorf – Fakel Gazproma Orenburg 3:1
Timo BOLL – Vladimir SAMSONOV 3:0 (11:3, 11:7, 14:12)
Patrick FRANZISKA – Dimitrij OVTCHAROV 1:3 (2:11, 11:6, 8:11, 7:11)
Panagiotis GIONIS – Alexey SMIRNOV 3:1 (11:3, 11:5, 8:11, 11:4)
Timo BOLL – Dimitrij OVTCHAROV 3:2 (7:11, 11:7, 8:11, 11:7, 12:10)