4,500 spectators cheer Vladi for his second place!
Hardly ever a world tour event of the last years has been so well occupied as the German open 2016 in Berlin was: 47 of the best 50 men of the world rankings including a certain 39-year old White Russian, who has played quite a few top tournaments in his long career, were registered for this event.
Vladi’s game was impressive, even against younger players; he proved it in his first match as he beat the Portuguese Tiago Apolonia on a set of 4:2. In a tight game, the age difference of almost 10 years between the two players was barely distinguishable.
The TIBHAR veteran then met against the Chinese Li Ping. The former world champion in doubles, who has been playing for less than a year for Qatar international, found no remedy against Vladi and had to congratulate him on a score of 1:4.
The quarter-finals happened to be the attraction of this tournament: record European champion Timo Boll meets table tennis legend Vladimir Samsonov. With a smooth 4:0 victory against the local hero, Vladi secured his place in the semi-finals in Berlin, where he defeated the Taiwanese Chuang Chih-Yuan, who has been ranking in the Top 10 of the world ranking for years now and recently won the Hungarian Open!
Nearly 4,500 spectators visited the Max-Schmeling Hall on Friday and encouraged the former Bundesliga player loudly to win over Chuang. Last but not least it was Ma Long, reigning world champion, who awaited Vladi in the finals. The Chinese demonstrated on the way to the finals, that he is currently the best player in the world, because he had not so far conceded one set in this tournament. However this changed in the finals, as the master from Belarus won the 4th set with 12:10 and could not resist to have a slight smile on his face. At the end of the game, the top star won 4:1 and was a that moment simply unbeatable.
The spectators though celebrated another star: a 39-year old who proved that he is still at the top!