OVTCHAROV Claims First ITTF World Cup Gold in LiègePhoto: Courtesy ITTF
German player is the Liebherr 2017 Men’s World Cup Champion after defeating the giant slayer, his compatriot Timo BOLL in front of a capacity crowd in Liege, Belgium, today 22 October 2017.
Dimitrij OVTCHAROV, who became the Men’s World Cup Champion for the first time here in Liege, had to overcome Timo BOLL, who was the hero of the Belgium crowd after saving seven match points to beat LIN Gauyuan (CHN) in the quarter final, and then beat Mr Unbeatable, world number one MA Long (CHN) in the semi final earlier today.
BOLL could not keep up his momentum and fell one match short in his quest to win the Men’s World Cup trophy for a third time. OVTCHAROV was simply too strong in the key moments and won the match to clinch the title 10-12, 11-8, 11-7, 9-11, 11-7, 11-2.
After lifting the cup, the elated German stated: “I could never have imagined few years ago that I could be winning the World Cup. I think the support from my family was very helpful because without them I could not have been here today as champion of the World Cup.”
“I am indeed privilege to be listed among the World Cup winners particularly I must acknowledge the quality of Timo who defeated two great Chinese players on his way to the final. I could see he was a bit tired as he could not move very well having played some fantastic matches. I think he deserves the victory as much as I do. I think I will have to go home and celebrate with my family,” added the 29-year-old.
After his disappointing loss to BOLL, the Olympic & World Champion MA recovered to win the bronze medal, overcoming a spirited Simon GAUZY 4-2 (11-5, 11-13, 6-11, 11-5, 11-7, 11-9) for a podium finish.
“I am disappointed with my loss in the semi final; I came here to do my best and give the fans something to cheer,” shared MA who just recently celebrated his 29th birthday two days earlier. “I really focused on this match and it is worthwhile winning the bronze medal match. I think for you to win any match, you have to be 100 percent ready. I did not lose my passion as I just focused on this match.”
With the conclusion of the Liebherr 2017 ITTF Men’s World Cup in Liège, all attention turns to the Uncle Pop 2017 ITTF Women’s World Cup presented by Polar Naturals to be held in Markham, Canada from 27-29 October 2017.