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Poll: Who is Greatest?

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  1. Matt Hetherington is offline
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    #1

    Waldner or Ma Long?

    This is a topic which could be either very one sided or quite interesting, who do you think at the peak of their career is the greatest player. Perhaps Ma Long has not peaked yet? You will have to use your imagination. I made a small video to help with the debate!

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    #2
    Zhang jike!!

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    #3
    waldner without a doubt he played with his knowledge of the game nd dictated play with it not like ma long who uses brute force nd aggression to win points

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    #4
    Quote Originally Posted by WiWa
    Zhang jike!!
    LOL always has to be one... :P
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    well i think there is no doubt, that waldner had an awesome touch and eye. but he was great, when there were only three chinese players (wang liqin, ma ling, liu guoliang) and a young timo boll. even if ma and liu dindt played the penholder backhand.
    so i would say, the level ten years later is much higher. everybody thinks, that ma long has just his service and his brutal forehand. but look .. everybody in the top 20 can play awesome table tennis. the fact that ma long just needs a service and his topspin, speaks for his class.
    ma long is 100% power. waldner was 60% power, 20% feeling and 20% improvisation. so for me walnder was truly great and he ever will be a legend. but ma long is the better player.
    No Rest, No Mercy, No Matter What! - Ma Long

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    #6
    Indeed, as always with those questions the answer is: They can't be compared. The only way to objectively compare the two would maybe be on titles won. But that comparison can only be made after Ma Longs career. On the other hand, Ma Long will probably hold the no.1 spot longer than Waldner did, since he only peaked at big tournaments. And PlasmaLight, there were more than those guys u mention that he has competed against in the early 90's, like Ma Wenge and Kim Taek Soo. But it is possible that the relative strength of China is larger nowadays, but that is incredibly hard to measure.

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    #7
    Yea and of course there was the match best of 5 to 21, the 38mm ball and speed glue. Nevertheless, a fun debate to speculate over! All hinges down to whether we think Ma Long will win a WTTC, WC and/or Olympic Games? :P
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    Can't really tell. Ma Long is still too young. I don't quite like Ma Long style in fact. He rely too much on his consistency and he doesn't play a lot of improvisation. However, I'm sure he will improve very soon. Looking back at 2009, he has improve a lot, his serve his backhand and his tactical play are much better. Back then, he rarely won a point without rally, but now it's changed.

    Waldner, on the other hand, won all the title. But he was in the period that China did not have really good players. At that time, Jiang Jialiang just retired, Liu Guoliang, Kong Linghui, Samsonov, Boll, Ma Lin, Wang liqin were still too young. The players who can compete waldner were only Persson and Getien.

    In my opinion, at the moment, of course, Waldner is much greater as he already won every big title (except pro tour grand final) but in the future, I think Ma Long will be at least as great as him.

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    #9
    Guile vs power?
    Guile.
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    yes, waldner was and remains a player who has a mental play with an impressive spins variations, ma long is like a machine, and remember the Energis Master 2009 when Waldner dispite his age, he lost 2-3 against Ma long

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    #11
    i think waldner just won 4 ittf pro tour titles in his career. ma long won 5 in 5 month
    No Rest, No Mercy, No Matter What! - Ma Long

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    #13
    Too early to compare.
    Huge Ma Long fan, but he has still to win a major.

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    #14
    Zhang jike > all

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    #15
    For now I would say Waldner... They are completely different in style, though.

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    #16
    Great opinions guys... here are my thoughts on these two exceptional players.

    I think Jan Ove Waldner set a standard for table tennis players to reach back in his era... he changed the dynamics of the game with his incredible fluency and relaxed state when playing. Players like Ma Lin, Kong Linghui, Liu Guoliang did their all to beat the mighty Jan Ove. They were his target... as these Chinese players aged, younger players came through like Zhang Jike, Xu Xin and Ma Long. Because in China there is so much more variation for the Chinese players to practice with and improve they are able to really push the boundaries of the sport. They have players that can push them. Jan Ove Waldner did to, however not to the extremes levels that Ma Long, Zhang Jike and Xu Xin have... So I think Xu, Jike, Long have taken the game to a new level. They are playing with similar physical characteristics of other sports like Tennis.

    I think Ma Long at peak would beat Jan Ove Waldner at peak... however this is only subjective and my opinion. It would be interesting to get answers from Waldner and Ma Long on this matter themselves

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    #17
    Quote Originally Posted by Dan
    Great opinions guys... here are my thoughts on these two exceptional players.

    I think Jan Ove Waldner set a standard for table tennis players to reach back in his era... he changed the dynamics of the game with his incredible fluency and relaxed state when playing. Players like Ma Lin, Kong Linghui, Liu Guoliang did their all to beat the mighty Jan Ove. They were his target... as these Chinese players aged, younger players came through like Zhang Jike, Xu Xin and Ma Long. Because in China there is so much more variation for the Chinese players to practice with and improve they are able to really push the boundaries of the sport. They have players that can push them. Jan Ove Waldner did to, however not to the extremes levels that Ma Long, Zhang Jike and Xu Xin have... So I think Xu, Jike, Long have taken the game to a new level. They are playing with similar physical characteristics of other sports like Tennis.

    I think Ma Long at peak would beat Jan Ove Waldner at peak... however this is only subjective and my opinion. It would be interesting to get answers from Waldner and Ma Long on this matter themselves
    LOL are you volunteering to do that coz I'm more than prepared to admit that's out of my realm :P haha. Waldner is like the Hendrix of the electric guitar, he may not be the best technically or best sounding anymore but he revolutionised the way guitar is played and he's an icon
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    #18
    i had ma long on the phone. he asked me "who is waldner?" :P
    No Rest, No Mercy, No Matter What! - Ma Long

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    #19
    Quote Originally Posted by PlasmaLight
    i had ma long on the phone. he asked me "who is waldner?" :P
    Hahaha, China carefully erased that out of their TT history Says enough

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    #20
    Quote Originally Posted by PingPongPom
    LOL are you volunteering to do that coz I'm more than prepared to admit that's out of my realm :P haha. Waldner is like the Hendrix of the electric guitar, he may not be the best technically or best sounding anymore but he revolutionised the way guitar is played and he's an icon
    Haha true, but we could talk about players before Waldner setting a standard for the sport...

    Its similar to the best football player ever debate.. Is the best player in football, Pele, George Best for example (Oldschool)... or are Lionel Messi, Cristiano Ronaldo better players..

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