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      zeio is offline
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      Germany in Decline? Rosskopf: Working to Revert It

      http://sports.sina.com.cn/others/pin...x8779048.shtml

      Playing career: Atlanta Olympics and WTTC Dortmund the most memorable

      TTW: How was the daily routine of the German team back in your time as a player? Did European associations organize joint training camp before the competition?

      Rosskopf: Back then, the German national team rarely invited players from other associations to train together, but most of my time in the club was spent with players from many countries, such as Primorac, Saive, Liang Geliang, and He Zhiwen et al. By training with players of different styles, we could improve our abilities to deal with various tactics.

      TTW: When did coach Li Xianjue start coaching you? How'd you rate this him?

      Rosskopf: In 1986, I enrolled at the German Table Tennis Association's sports school in Duisburg. At that time, Li Xianjue was there as a technical and multi-ball coach. We all called him Mr. Li. But as early as 1983, I had contact with him when I participated in the training of the German national team. He was a member of the coaching team of the German national team at that time. Then in 1988, I left the sports school to join the Düsseldorf club. We were together almost every day during that time. His multi-ball training was a brand new method, which is very important to improve my technical level, especially in correcting our strokes. Coach Li was very kind. His German was not very fluent at first, but it posed no problem with the communication in table tennis, which surprised me.

      TTW: In 1998, you won the Men's World Cup in China. What kind of feeling was that?

      Rosskopf: The level between the European players and the Chinese players who participated in that edition was very close. I had a good draw, meeting Primorac and Kim Taeksoo early on, and I was more comfortable with their style of play. As the tournament progressed, I found that everyone was very nervous. Everyone had a chance to win. I was just more lucky, getting the only World Cup title in my life. I didn't have a coach([don't know his German name] was away because of JOOLA's job), didn't have a masseur, and had to take an interview with a German reporter back home over the phone before the semi-final and final. It's incredible to think about it now. Ever since the Chinese team regained the WTTC titles in 1995, the atmosphere of table tennis in China has improved greatly. The spectators were very enthusiastic and the stadium was filled almost every match.

      TTW: What is the most memorable match in your career?

      Rosskopf: The most memorable singles match was the quarter-final of the Atlanta Olympics 1996. I played against Kim Taeksoo. Because that was a medal match, it was very intense and ecstatic, and fortunately I defeated him. Another unforgettable doubles match was the men's doubles final at the WTTC Dortmund 1989. Playing on home soil, the audience gave me and Fetzner the courage to win.

      Coaching career: Hard at work to change the generation gap of the team

      TTW: Is it a natural process when transitioning from player to coach? Or is it a well thought-out decision?

      Rosskopf: This was decided after careful considerations. During my player career, I had met many excellent coaches. I got a lot of help and inspiration in working and speaking with them. So for a long time, I have always had the idea of taking up ​​coaching after retiring.

      TTW: In China, many excellent players strive to become coaches of the national team after retiring. But in Europe, it's rare to take over the national team coach directly after retiring like you. Why do you think this is the case?

      Rosskopf: This situation is indeed a very regrettable for European table tennis. Many excellent players have accumulated a lot of valuable experience in their careers, but they have not been able to continue to pass it on. This is a huge loss. I think there are many reasons for this. In Asia, for example, a team can consist of a bunch of experienced coaches working together, which is incomparable for European teams. In addition, European coaches are not well-paid. Players generally have relatively longer careers, normally playing well into their 30s. Once they retire, they want a different life, because coaching may be more tiring than playing.

      TTW: The German team is still recognized as the most powerful team in Europe. What is the current status in terms of the echelon?

      Rosskopf: We have Boll and Ovtcharov on the team for the time being, so we are still a strong team in Europe and in the world, but beyond them, the German team actually has a generation gap. Due to the reform of the educational system, the enlightenment period and growth period of German teenagers are now postponed, so the younger generation of players generally lack sufficient training time. Most people start their careers after graduating at 18 years old. Boll and I both joined the Bundesliga when we were 14 years old. The training of the reserve echelon is not only a problem for the German team, but also a problem for the entire European table tennis. Nowadays, young players have a lot of hobbies, and they all hope to get early results, but they have neglected hard training and techniques. We are actively working in hopes of changing this situation.

      TTW: There are a lot of newcomers in Asia now. Is there anyone who has left you an impression?

      Rosskopf: Other than the Chinese players, Harimoto is outstanding. He is very talented and hardworking; Jang Woojin is also a fantastic player. Asian players in general start out very early, and the financial investment is also very large. European players cannot compare with them in this respect.

      Excerpt from Table Tennis World, Volume 5, 2019
      Last edited by zeio; 6 Days Ago at 04:32 PM.

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      Quote Originally Posted by zeio View Post
      Rosskopf: We have Boll and Ovtcharov on the team for the time being, so we are still a strong team in Europe and in the world, but beyond them, the German team actually has a generation gap
      Excerpt from Table Tennis World, Volume 5, 2019

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      zeio is offline
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      Turning pro at 18 when it used to be 14. There goes 1 Olympic cycle.

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