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Champions League Men - 10 Apr 2014

Historical chance for Fenerbahce


“I ‘m still speechless, the six ladies have celebrated table tennis at the highest possible level and I am incredibly proud of our team!” It was a first comment of Berlin`s president President Alexander TEICHMANN after 1st leg of 2013/14 Women

“I ‘m still speechless, the six ladies have celebrated table tennis at the highest possible level and I am incredibly proud of our team!” It was a first comment of Berlin`s president President Alexander TEICHMANN after 1st leg of 2013/14 Women`s European Champions League final, played five weeks ago, but now sounds like good invitation for returning clash which will be held this Sunday (April 13th, 13h00 CET, live on LAOLA1.tv). TTC Berlin Eastside managed to beat Fenerbahce 3:2 (11:9) so no. 1 seed is under big pressure to confirm all predictions prior the season.

Berlin arrives at Fenerbahce Ulker Sports Arena (capacity 2.500) with an impressive 14-0 score in regular season of Bundesliga. Irina PALINA`s girls have a chance to repeat success from 2011/12 and also to become fourth club with two WECL crowns in the history, after Sterilgarda (Italy), Heerlen (Netherlands) and Linz (Austria). In Cup of Champions era several German clubs took European title, but just Berlin could do it twice since establishing of WECL.

“I am realist in this match. Not optimist, not pessimist, and I think balance now 50/50 percent. I hope it would be good day for us. All team was playing good in last Pro-Tour tournaments, they are in good form now and all of them wish for this WECL season the best result”, says Irina PALINA.

On the other side, Fenerbahce is preparing to create new chapter of WECL history. After two ETTU Cup titles in a row, Istanbul`s side fights for its very first WECL crown and, even more, to become first ever Turkish club with that achievement. In last six season they took all 12 possible titles in domestic competitions (league and cup), having now an opportunity to reach third triple-crown in three years (2012 and 2013 domestic league and cup, plus ETTU Cup).

Fenerbahce`s manager Gurhan YALDIZ has no doubt that his side will have a super support from the stands: “This match will be very difficult for us. Berlin is coming with an advantage, but last time we won 3:1 and it means that we have enough power to win this final in total. My players have very good concentration and I believe in our hall with our spectators and good atmosphere we can play much better than in Berlin. If we start good than I believe we can win the cup. Last two seasons we won ETTU cup in away hall but first time we play the final match at home and we do not want to give cup to Berlin. We will fight until last point because even one point could decide the WECL title”.

The upcoming game will be forth one between these two clubs this season. They also met in group stage when Berlin also won first home game 3:2, but Fenerbahce answered by 3:1 in Istanbul. Although SHAN Xiaona (Berlin) and Viktoria PAVLOVICH (Fenerbahce) are considered as no. 1 players in their teams, they were under expectations in previous clashes: German 1-3 score, Byelorussian 2-2. Georgina POTA played excellent, having 3-1 against Turkish champion, and on the other side HU Melek has 4-2 (beat twice the best Berlin`s player SHAN).

The winner could be decided by the tactics, knowing how big role used to have defensive players in the past (IVANCAN 3-2, PAVLOVICH 2-2). No doubt that Turkish side expects more from CHING I-Cheng (1-2).

Actual ITTF World rankings are – Fenerbahce: Viktoria PAVLOVICH no. 17, Elizabeta SAMARA no. 27, CHENG I-Ching no. 28, HU Melek no. 32; TTC Berlin Eastide: SHAN Xiaona no.38, Georgina POTA no. 42, Kristin SILBEREISEN no. 46, Irene IVANCAN no. 64.

The first final game of 2013/14 WECL final

TTC Berlin Eastside – Fenerbahce 3:2
Irene IVANCAN – CHING I-Cheng 3:1 (4:11, 11:6, 11:7, 11:4)
Georgina POTA – HU Melek 1:3 (13:11, 12:14, 6:11, 8:11)
SHAN Xiaona – Viktoria PAVLOVICH 1:3 (11:8, 9:11, 12:14, 5:11)
Irene IVANCAN – HU Melek 3:0 (11:9, 11:9, 11:9)
Georgina POTA – CHING I-Cheng 3:2 (3:11, 12:10, 14:12, 11:8)

Alex MILETIC, EWT

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