World Cadet Challenge Boys Teams Final “Live” October 24, 2007Posted by glenntepper in Glenn's point of view !, Mikael's opinion.
Tags: china, ittf, table tennis, world cadet challenge
Europe-Asia Boys Team Final. The organisers dream matchup.
Match 1: Franziska[EUR] vs Nomura[ASI]
Key contest first on the table. German Patrick Franziska facing lefthander Japan’s Taiyo Nomura, both big and developed players that could easily be mistaken for much older.
Strong third ball attacks from both players characterised the early games with Nomura coming out stronger in first game. In the second Franziska manged to forced Nomura back form the table more, opening up the match and levelling the score at 1-1 with an 11-9 scoreline.
Game 3 Franziska looks comfortable at 9-7 before failing to return Nomura’s next 2 serves. Franziska finally converting the game on his 3rd game point with a well disguised long heavy backspin serve to the forehand, 13-11. Again the key being who can hold their ground close to the table.
Long topspin rallies puntuate the fourth game, with Nomura’s variation enabling him to level proceedings at 2-2 with an 11-7 scoreline.
In a clever ploy by the Europeans, the girl’s team sat with and befriended a local school group watching the match, taught them the european chants and it was game on for the europeans….
Clearly lifted by the crowd, Franziska took the final game 11-6 to give Europe the dream start they so sought.
Match 2: Song[ASI] vs Schmidl[EUR]
Europe-Asia but also Germany-China, so often the matchup in recent years with Timo Boll taking on the might of the chinese. Is today a glimpse into the future…….
Not an easy task, and a tight first game 12-10 to Song, led to a more relaxed Song and less positive Schmidl, 11-1 to Song.
Confidence gone for Christoph Schmidl, a timeout at 2-0 and 7-2 was called. A brave fightback but it was not enough 13-11 Song. Match scores 1-1.
Match 3:Le Breton[EUR] vs Law[ASI]
Lefthander Thomas Le Breton of France, playing at No 3 in all matches, used his strong forehand topspin to advantage, taking the first 12-10. In the second game The “speedy” Frenchmen grabs the initiative with the scored tied at seven and later converts on his second gamepoint to take a 2-0 lead – 11-9. In the third and what is to be the final game of this match, Law clearly struggles with the tempo of Le Bretons attack – 11-5 and Europe grabs the lead in the team final 2 – 1.
Match 4 ; Franziska (EUR) vs Song (Asia)
The Chinese lefthander Song opens this crucial fourth single with some furious forehand attack to grab an early lead. The young German rebounds but does not reach all the way ; 9-11. The same scenario appears in the second game. An early lead for Song who covers most of the table with his blistering forehand. Song this time converts on his third gamepoint to take a comfortable 2-0 lead ; 8-11 In the third Song once again jumps on the service of Franziska and puts the German under early pressure. The best rally of the match has Patric attacking with his forehand cross-court four, five times before the Chinese counter-blocks the last one to win the point . Well deserved win for Song , who was sharp all the way through; 6-11 and 0-3. The team match is now tied at 2.
Match 5 ; Schmidl (EUR) vs Nomura (AS)
The righthanded German Christoph Schmidl faces a tough task in the tall Japanese youngster Taiyo Nomura , a left-hander combining his great reach and skill with good feeling for the game. Nomura jumps out of the gate and takes the opening game 4-11.
In the second game it is however Schmidl with an early lead. Shortly thereafter 7-1 becomes 7-8 before the European coach Jarek Kolodziejczyk call for time. The European NR 2 settles down and puts two good revers spin services on the table to win the first attack and the points. Game over 11-8 for Europe.
Schmidl now clearly has the momentum and more or less runs away with the third game. He works hard to get into forehand attacking positions and seems to have the upper hand also in the service and return department ; 11-6 and 2-1 for Schmidl.
The lead alternates in the early stages, but Schmidl became hesitant. Perhaps thinking too early of the world cadet title…..Nomura’s increased aggresion gives him a 10-6 lead, before Schmidl refocuses to move to 9-10 at which time Asia calls a well timed timeout, …and the next point 11-9. 2-2
The World Cadet Challenge Boy’s Team title is down to one final game.
Huge rally at 2-0 for Nomura, with Nomura defending bravely for over 20 balls.
Nomura changes ends ahead by the narrowest of margins 5-4, but strong topspins into Nomura’s forehand gives Schmidl a 6-5 lead.
The european bench is on their feet as Schmidl takes a 10-7 lead, finally taking the match 11-8.
The bench erupts and players stream onto the court as the realisation sets in that Europe have won the World Cadet Challenge Team title for the first time.