Players ready for action at the German Open
The world’s best table tennis players have arrived in Magdeburg, Germany for the next installment of the GAC Group 2014 World Tour Super Series. The German Open, which is the 3rd Super Series event of the year, begins today with the qualification ro
The world’s best table tennis players have arrived in Magdeburg, Germany for the next installment of the GAC Group 2014 World Tour Super Series.
The German Open, which is the 3rd Super Series event of the year, begins today with the qualification rounds. A total of 291 players from 41 countries will be fighting it out for the $200,000 prize money on offer and valuable World Tour standing points, which will qualify them for the 1-million-dollar World Tour Grand Finals.
Former world number one and four-time German Open champion Timo BOLL (GER) who is again the star attraction in his home event stated: “For us players such a big tournament on home soil is always a highlight. I hope that once again, I will do well here at the German Open. Heading towards the World Championships, the German Open is a real rehearsal for me, my only international tournament.”
The weight of the German expectation will be shared with Olympic bronze medalist Dimitrij OVTCHAROV, who will be desperate to do one better than his silver medal at last year’s German Open.
The big success story of the GAC Group 2013 World Tour, Masato SHIONO (JPN) is feeling optimistic about his chances in Magdeburg, despite having to play double-Olympic silver medalist and number one seed WANG Hao (CHN) in the second round: “It is a tough draw, but I am looking forward to it,” stated SHIONO who has rocketed up in the world rankings since shocking the world by winning the Japan Open last year.
“WANG Hao is a living legend, so it will be an honour to play against him, but I will be playing to win!” concluded the 27-year-old defensive player.
2013 Korean Open Champion SEO Hyowon (KOR) is the favorite on the women’s side. The 26-year-old will be pushed all the way by a stellar field, led by 2009 German Open Champion and Olympic team silver medalist Sayaka HIRANO (JPN).
In addition to the men’s and women’s singles events, the table tennis fans will be cramming into the GETEC-Arena Magdeburg to watch the world’s best men’s and women’s doubles pairs battling for the gold medals on offer.
The qualification rounds run for two days (26-27 March), with the main draw commencing on Friday 28 March until the finals on Sunday 30 March.
The GAC Group 2014 ITTF World Tour consists of 22 events in 22 countries, with the world’s best table tennis players battling out for a record USD2,739,700 of prize money and entry to the World Tour Grand Final later in the year.
The World Tour is separated into three tiers (highest first): Super (6 events), Major (5 events), Challenge (11 events). The higher the series, the more prize money, World ranking points, World Tour ranking points and higher quality of competition on offer.