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  1. lgreggs is offline
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    #1

    Can Timo Boll's victory give rest of world belief?

    Of course we all saw the brilliant match yesterday where Timo Boll defeated Ma Long in a nail biting 7 sets at the mens World Cup. The day before Timo also took out Lin Gaoyuan of China. If Timo can do it, so can anyone?

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    Over the last few years we have seen countless European players defeat Timo Boll. If Timo Boll can beat the Chinese why can't the rest of the world can? Players like Hugo, Paul Drinkhall, Freitas, Mizutani... This also shows that being 36 you can still play the highest level of TT!

    Belief is such an important thing when competing.

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    Last edited by lgreggs; 10-23-2017 at 07:33 AM.
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  2. brodolio is offline
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    #2
    Mmm I'm not sure that everyone who defeated Timo could win against Ma.
    I think that Timo is in great condition at the moment, that's why he defeated 2 super Chinese players in a row.
    So I truly believe that everyone who works hard, has a great technique and experience, is mentally and physically prepared could win against everyone.

    That means : there is still hope

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  3. Shifu is offline
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    #3
    To be honest I only think that Ma lost because he was injured and not in form. Ma has knee, waist and wrist injuries, as far as I know he even played with a waist protector.

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    #4
    Let's not get excited too soon. Nothing to take away from Timo's excellent play but his win against LGY was sheer luck. Regarding ML, I believe irrespective of injury or not, his motivation level is not that high. He achieved what every CNT member thrives for - to be a Grand slam winner. It is a similar situation to ZJK's few years back. CNT guys nearing 30 normally lose their motivation and start losing more and more to outsiders. But one thing is for sure, CNT does not have good bench strength right now. It might take a 1-2 years to get the newer players to get the needed experience and shine. Only FZD at the moment might be unbeatable,but, we shall see in german open and grand finals soon.

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    Last edited by drunix80; 10-23-2017 at 08:29 AM.

  5. Garrison is offline
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    #5
    Of course the chinese are not unbeatable. But we shouldn't forget that Timo was #1 of the world multiple times and when he is in good shape his skill ceiling is probably still higher than any other non chinese player right now. Hard work is key.

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  6. RidTheKid is offline
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    #6
    Nothing is impossible. But regardless of Timos own form, he wouldn't have had a chance against a Ma Long in form. To think otherwise is just ignorant.

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    #7
    Let's not forget, Timo's style is more close-to-table and more aggressive than the typical European style. In fact, Timo can play very smart with spin, ball placement and turning from defense to offense. He reminds me of Ma Lin in shakehand grip.

    Timo is truly a TT genius. He has given the rest of the world some hope. But sadly, I don't see his talents in any European player right now.

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  8. Sali is offline
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    #8
    There was a very close match ML with Niwa, despite of score ML was very lucky with some important points at the end of game 1 and 2 and last. It seems rest of the world make a big step to be closer to chinese but there are two important poinst:
    1. technique
    2. serve receive

    That is why Timo, Niwa, Mizutani can be competitive to chinese. Other players who did not gain such capabilities can only train footwork and some technique but overall they cannot reach top 5.

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    #9
    Hopefully without LGL chinese players will be more often beatable
    Last edited by vik; 10-23-2017 at 02:22 PM.

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    #10
    You forget the fact that Ma Long is injured and still wiped the floor with Niwa.

    Quote Originally Posted by Sali
    There was a very close match ML with Niwa, despite of score ML was very lucky with some important points at the end of game 1 and 2 and last. It seems rest of the world make a big step to be closer to chinese but there are two important poinst:
    1. technique
    2. serve receive

    That is why Timo, Niwa, Mizutani can be competitive to chinese. Other players who did not gain such capabilities can only train footwork and some technique but overall they cannot reach top 5.

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  11. brodolio is offline
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    #11
    Quote Originally Posted by RidTheKid
    You forget the fact that Ma Long is injured and still wiped the floor with Niwa.
    Agree. It has been an easy one. Plus, (it's a personal thought) I really don't like how Koki approaches matches in general : he seems to be bored.

    I'm still curious about how long Ma will last as n.1

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    #12
    Yes Niwa has no passion at all. He could start knitting or put his time to some other hobby instead.

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    #13
    I keep reading that ML was injured etc. but we musn't forget that a lot of top players carry niggles. Ma Long himself said that he hadn't had a single tournament in his entire career where he felt 100% physically with his body.
    Ma Long: "Fatigue and injuries are part of the game. There is no tournament that allows you to get well-prepared, injury-free, sound sleep and comforts. I have not experienced such a tournament through all these years.”


    If he really felt that he couldn't win the tournament, he would have let FZD take his place. Comes with pushing your body so hard at this level. Even Boll said that he had shoulder problems during the 2014 World Cup and he hasn't exactly been injury free over the last couple of years either.

    Still, if you look at the age difference, Timo Boll was still the slower player of the two and has had close matches against Ma Long in the past couple of years in important tournaments (2013 WTTC, 2017 WTTC) and technically he has kept getting more and more complete so it's unfair to say that this victory would have never happened otherwise.

    Moreover, physique is not the ultimate deciding factor when these two play each other. Boll himself said that this other matches in the WTTC 2017 were more taxing physically but his match against Ma Long was the most mentally taxing match. Ma Long and Boll both play a very clever, spin and placement variation game. This is why Ovtcharov was basically able to bully Boll into rallys in the finals because he is familiar with all of Boll's variations but hasn't really found an answer to Ma Long's variations as of yet.

    And there's also the victory against LGY in the quarter finals.

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  14. Sali is offline
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    #14
    Well you guys are funny, not long ago Koki has beaten Xu Xin and Ovtcharov - he is more consistent then before. The match maybe was not that excited it was just mistake match but look carefully how many mistakes ML Niwa is creative and fast playing right after bounce. I am not big fan of his attitude but his skills and touch indisputable.

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  15. Xylit is offline
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    #15
    To answer the topic title: No.

  16. NextLevel is offline
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    #16
    Quote Originally Posted by Sali
    Well you guys are funny, not long ago Koki has beaten Xu Xin and Ovtcharov - he is more consistent then before. The match maybe was not that excited it was just mistake match but look carefully how many mistakes ML Niwa is creative and fast playing right after bounce. I am not big fan of his attitude but his skills and touch indisputable.
    His attitude is quite fine - not all players are loud. I don't think it helps him compete with his opponent but it is his own approach. He clearly loves the sport and you can see how much he smiles when he wins. He talks about table tennis being the only thing he is good at and the only thing that makes him happy. People should just understand him.

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    Cobra Kai TT Exponent - No mercy in this dojo, no matter your rating or the score. All spin, no power or footwork.

    "We don't rise to the level of our expectations, we fall to the level of our training" - Archilochus

  17. Loopadoop is offline
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    #17
    Quote Originally Posted by Garrison
    Of course the chinese are not unbeatable. But we shouldn't forget that Timo was #1 of the world multiple times and when he is in good shape his skill ceiling is probably still higher than any other non chinese player right now. Hard work is key.
    In addition, I think maybe Timo has learned the nuances of the plastic ball, adapted them to his style, to play effective vs the Chinese Styles. I think he was helped by playing in the T2 league.

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  18. ajtatosmano2 is offline
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    #18
    Quote Originally Posted by brodolio
    Agree. It has been an easy one. Plus, (it's a personal thought) I really don't like how Koki approaches matches in general : he seems to be bored.

    I'm still curious about how long Ma will last as n.1
    He looks bored if you look at his back. He really really rarely chooes and his stance looks like he is just standing, but it's not true. He is ready. He is working hard. He enjoys playing. He enjoys winning. Sometimes you see that after winning a match he quietly quits the court. It's not because he is not interested. He is a perfectionist, and he doesn't jump in happiness when he beats someone whom he should beat normally.
    Niwa is no match for Ma Long. The main problem that Niwa doesn't use enough power in his shots and can't penetrate ML's defence. I still like him more than I like ML.

  19. darucla is offline
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    #19
    In real age terms, 29 and 36 are not that far apart. Timo has the extra experience, without exactly being an old wreck, and has always been the European most feared by Ma Long. And we all know that Chinese years are much harder gained than European ones. They are pushed much harder in training and in expectation. I believe that Ma Long is possibly the greatest of all time, but his time is definitely running out.

    As to the future, a lot depends on the current management politics in China. Clearly, it will take some doing to drag FZD down, and there is no real reason to believe that there are not many more younger players waiting for their turns. As for the rest of the world, I am not seeing anyone from Japanese men, or anyone else for that matter, really posing a threat. I worry that Harimoto is being pushed towards early burnout. The best Europeans are all ageing, even Dima is older than Ma Long by a few weeks.

    On the women's side, China has Sun YingSha, who has tremendous potential. I feel the most serious opposition is Mima Ito, who shows strong signs of expanding her game. Hirano may be doing the same, but we are not seeing it. Still, of that generation, if Sun plays in Tokyo 2020 (unlikely), she would be my bet to win.

    I have to agree that the T2 competition has been very useful for most of the combatants; given them a lot of high level experience without the pressure of world ranking being on the line.

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  20. Baal is offline
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    #20
    I think Timo can still on occasion play as well as he ever did and that level is better than any other European now. But at his age he is not going to be at that level consistently. I would not read too much into this result. CNT has so many resources and so many players. There are still structural problems with how European players have to make their living compared to how CNT supports their players and their training.

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    Last edited by Baal; 10-23-2017 at 03:03 PM.

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