by Simon Daish
The home crowd was left fairly pleased with the outcomes for the German players in the Men’s Singles competition on Day Five as three of the country’s representatives extended their journeys, and one of those players was Timo Boll.
However, eighth seed Timo Boll was pushed all the way to a deciding game in the Round of 32, and he faces another difficult challenge on Day Six as he prepares to take on Portugal’s Marcos Freitas. Both players enjoy an aggressive style of game and should provide an exciting match to follow.
Table tennis fans from across the globe were left stunned on the fifth day of play in Düsseldorf after the two times Men’s Singles World champion Zhang Jike shockingly exited the competition.
Korea Republic’s Lee Sangsu was the player to cause the dramatic upset following a powerful display, but can he register a similar result in his next encounter against the experienced Vladimir Samsonov? Attempting to predict the outcome of this match is fairly tricky as both players have looked very impressive so far in Düsseldorf, so be sure stay up-to-date with the proceedings.
The first trophy of the Liebherr 2017 World Championships will be handed out on Day Six, as the battle for the Mixed Doubles event wraps up.
Resuming at the semi-finals stage of the competition the top half of the draw sees Japan’s Maharu Yoshimura and Kasumi Ishikawa take on the mixed nationality pairing of China’s Fang Bo and Germany’s Petrissa Solja.
Two years ago at the Qoros 2015 World Championships in Suzhou it was a mixed nationality partnership which received the title due to a strong effort from China’s Xu Xin and Korea Republic’s Yang Haeun. Fang Bo and Petrissa Solja will be hoping to continue that trend, but Maharu Yoshimura and Kasumi Ishikawa are the slightly higher seeded pairing and appear to have formed a solid combination.
There are two fantastic encounters in the penultimate round of the Women’s Singles competition, one of which is a rematch of the Seamaster 2017 ITTF-Asian Championships quarter-finals tie between Japan’s Miu Hirano and China’s Ding Ning.
Miu Hirano prevailed in that duel in April and has already ensured that Japan will receive its first Women’s Singles medal since 1969, but top seed Ding Ning is on a mission to defend her World Championships title and will be firing on all cylinders in the last four. Can Miu Hirano pull off another surprise win against Ding Ning? Or will the defending champion book her spot in the final?
The other semi-final tie sees the second and third seeded competitors face one another as Liu Shiwen goes up against Zhu Yuling.
Yet another unpredictable tie, both Liu Shiwen and Zhu Yuling are major contenders for the title but only one will have the opportunity to achieve that goal. Which of these two Chinese representatives will progress?