By: Ian Marshall, ITTF Publications Editor
At the final hurdle he beat Vladimir Samsonov of Belarus in three straight games (11-8, 11-3, 11-7); both players agreeing the match should be best of five games following a most intensive schedule.
Earlier at the semi-final stage Timo Boll had beaten colleague, Dimitrij Ovtcharov in a thrilling seven games duel (11-7, 11-3, 12-10, 9-11, 7-11, 9-11, 11-9); whilst Vladimir Samsonov had overcome Bastian Steger, like Timo Boll and Dimitrij Ovtcharov from Germany (11-4, 11-5, 11-5, 7-11, 9-11, 13-11).
Notably over 2,000 people watched Europe’s leading player compete for a prize fund of €5,000, the winner receiving €2,500.
Additional to Timo Boll, Vladimir Samsonov, Dimitrij Ovtcharov and Bastian Steger; also from Germany, Patrick Franziska competed as did Russia’s Alexander Shibaev, Ukraine’s Kou Lei plus Panagiotis Gionis of Greece and the English trio comprising Liam Pitchford, Paul Drinkhall and Sam Walker.
Also in action as a guest was Qatar’s Li Ping.