China booked the place in the ultimate stagePhoto: ITTF
LIEBHERR 2018 World Team Table Tennis Championships
In the semi-finals of the Men’s Event at the LIEBHERR 2018 World Team Table Tennis Championships Sweden lost to the team they beat last to become World Champions in 2000, China. China showed no mercy on their way to the ultimate stage. Sweden was not exception. MA Long overcame Mattias KARLSSON in straight games, FAN Zhendong needed four to beat Kristian KARLSSON, whilst XU Xin sealed the victory for China after straight games victory over Jon PERSSON.
“On Monday I will be very happy thinking that we won the medal, but right now I just need time to cope with the defeat. China proved too strong and I am unhappy that I missed few easy balls. We gave our best but eventually could not find the answer for our adversary’s game,” said Jon PERSSON.
Coach Ulf “Tickan” KARLSSON: “I can not complain about the attitude and fighting spirit of my team. We also created some chances, but beside great quality, China also showed great desire to win this. They played like they are on fire. Unlike some other matches, they were very well focused. Obviously they respect our team and you can see that by the way they fought. Maybe it will be better for us if they were little bit sleepy or indifferent.”