Home Sport news Maybe he’ll come over one day – sports

Maybe he’ll come over one day – sports

by archysport

It is roughly as far from Dallas to Houston on the Texas highway as it is on the Munich to Frankfurt highway. For Dirk Nowitzki there will probably never be another opportunity to see his buddy Timo Boll play so close to a World Cup. Nowitzki lives in Dallas, Boll is playing just 400 kilometers south of Houston this week at the first table tennis world championship on the American continent. “We had contact and of course the World Cup was an issue,” reports Boll. “Dirk would like to come over, but nothing is certain yet.”

He could use the support of basketball legend Nowitzki, 43, well. At this individual World Cup, Boll has nothing less than the weal and woe of global table tennis in his hand in the eternal struggle against the overwhelming Chinese power. After a bye in round one, the 40-year-old Odenwälder plays in the second round against the 24-year-old Chinese Zhou Qihao – and he is the only Chinese in the lower tableau of the 128 field in the men’s singles. That means: If Boll wins against him, then the next Chinese lurks in the final. On the other hand: Zhou Qihao, who rarely rides internationally and therefore only ranks 123rd in the world rankings, defeated his top compatriots Liang Jingkun, Ma Long and Fan Zhendong in an Olympic test tournament in May. For Boll, this World Cup could end after the first individual.

There is a premiere among German women

The best Chinese and the best German are exceptionally not present at this World Cup. Olympic champion Ma Long has knee problems and Tokyo bronze winner Dimitrij Ovtcharov, who almost defeated Ma Long in a historic Olympic semi-final, had to undergo ankle surgery. That is why the German quintet in Houston consists of Boll, Patrick Franziska, Ruwen Filus, Benedikt Duda and Dang Qiu.

According to the set, Franziska (number ten) would have to make it to the second round and Boll (number eight) to the quarter-finals. But what does that mean? They also play doubles together and have a chance of winning a medal. However, they will meet the Chinese doubles Fan Zhendong / Wang Chuqin in the second round. So if Nowitzki doesn’t want to come to Houston until the weekend, he might not see Boll in action anymore.

There is a first for the German women. The native Chinese Han Ying and Shan Xiaona are allowed to play for Germany at a World Cup for the first time nine years after their naturalization and an associated embargo period. In Houston you form the German quintet with Petrissa Solja, Nina Mittelham and Sabine Winter. According to the seeding, Solja (No. 16) should make it to the round of 16, where the Japanese Mima Ito should wait.

In the future, a woman will be at the head of the national as well as the international association

A woman will in future also be at the head of the table tennis world association ITTF. The Swede Petra Sörling is the only candidate at the general assembly on Wednesday after the German ITTF President Thomas Weikert announced early on after seven years in office that she would no longer run. The lawyer from Limburg in Hesse wants to be elected President of the German Olympic Sports Confederation on December 4th in Weimar.

Richard Prause, sports director at the German Table Tennis Association (DTTB), expects the change in personnel in the ITTF to have little impact on German table tennis. In European table tennis, the Swede is certainly being watched critically for whether she stubbornly represents local interests against increasing Asian influence. “We have to keep trying to get big events and to keep Germany as a strong table tennis location”, says Prause.

The future first female president in the history of the DTTB also faces this task. On December 11th, Claudia Herweg from Cologne will replace Michael Geiger, who is abdicating from the Black Forest. After Düsseldorf did not win the bid for the 2023 World Cup (in favor of Durban / South Africa), the German association is reportedly considering an application for 2025. Whether Boll will also play along is rather questionable.

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