Germany regains the title at the LIEBHERR ITTF European ChampionshipsPhoto: Rémy Gros ITTF
For a seventh time in history Germany is at the top of the Europe. They clinched the gold medal in the Men’s Teams Event at the LIBEHERR ITTF Championships in Luxembourg.
It was the second time Portugal and Germany meet in the final of the Men’s Team’s Event at the European Championships; the outcome being very different to their most last encounter in the final in Lisbon 2015 when Germany suffered defeat.
Europe’s no two Timo BOLL had a shaky start against the player currently ranked at the position no. four Marcos FREITAS. By narrow margin, Portugal’s player took the opening game, before Timo leveled. Tense contest continued with FREITAS clinched third game by 15:13, but once again BOLL responded in furious style to push the match into the decisive game. Marcos was first to reach the match ball at 10:7, BOLL reduced the difference; leveled and win the match (9:11, 11:7, 13:15, 11:5, 12:10).
“Marcus and I know each other very well. At the World Champion ships we also played very close game, so I spend a lot of time preparing for this match. He is also very intelligent; it is very challenging to play against him. He forces you to play at the highest level all time,” said Timo BOLL.
Marcus had his chances.
“I had match ball and everything could be different,” explained FREITAS.
Europe’s leading player Dimitrij OVTCHAROV showed no mercy against Europe’s no. seven Tiago APOLONIA. In the second game APOLONIA responded but his efforts were denied by very powerful performance of Dimitrij 3:0 (11:6, 11:7, 11:9).
“We were determent to regain the title that we lost in Lisbon,” said OVTCHAROV.
Patrick FRANZISKA no. 11 in Europe had a game ball but it was Joao MONTEIRO Europe’s no. 20 who won it at 10:12. After Patrick lost the first game, he regained the control to seal the match in four games.
“My teammates helped me with 2:0. I was not under pressure. Even in the first game I had 10:7, so I could sealed the match earlier,” said FRANZISKA.
MONTEIRO summarised:”We won five matches in the row. It is hard when you lost the final, but generally we had a good tournament here.”
Germany – Portugal 3:0
Timo BOLL – Marcos FREITAS 3:2 (9:11, 11:7, 13:15, 11:5, 12:10)
Dimitrij OVTCHAROV - Tiago APOLONIA 3:0 (11:6, 11:7, 11:9)
Patrick FRANZISKA - Joao MONTEIRO 3:0 (10:12, 11:6, 11:9, 11:5)
Men's Team Final Positions
13 SLOVAK REPUBLIC
21 CZECH REPUBLIC