Timo Boll

Left-handed German table tennis player, Timo Boll is Germany 's best table tennis player and a former World No 1. He was the world number one for around 6 months in 2003. However, he slipped in 2004 to eleventh rank. Towards the middle of 2005, he fought back to third rank and then to second place. For most part of 2006, he maintained that place, before Wang Liqin overtook him. Currently, Timo Boll is in second place in world table tennis ranking and the top ranked European male paddler.

Timo Boll was born in Erbach in Germany on March 8, 1981. He began playing table tennis at the age of 4, taking to the game just for fun. Richard Prause has been coaching Timo Boll for the last several years. Timo Boll is now a triple Gold medal winner at the European championships. He recently won the European championship, beating Vladimir Samsonov of Belarus, 11-7, 11-7, 11-3, 8-11, and 11-6.

Boll is quite strong in his forehand topspin drive and fast backhand loop. He is the only player who has been able to counter the formidable Chinese. He plays very close to the table, which gives very little reaction time to the opponents. He is now quite fit and aggressive to match the Chinese players.

The European Championships of 2002 saw him take the first of his Men's Singles titles before winning again in 2007 in Serbia, and 2008 in Russia. Timo Boll won his 4th title at Liebherr Europe Top-12 in Febraury, 2009. Timo fought hard in the last round against Vladimir Samsonov. In 2009 he also won the Qatar Open and German Open. He won the Euro Top 12 coveted title on three occasions, 2002 in the Netherlands, 2003 in Germany and in 2006 in Denmark. Boll exclusively uses and recommends Butterfly table tennis equipment.

The Liebherr Men’s World Cup in 2005 brought out the best in Timo Boll. He had beaten Wang Liqin in 7 games in the quarterfinals and he had overcome Ma Lin in the semi-finals, again in a 7-game match. The question on every one’s mind was whether he would continue the same form in the finals. His opponent was Wang Hao of China. They had earlier met 4 times in international competitions. Wang Hao had won the first 2 matches, while in the latter two matches Timo Boll had triumphed. So, they were quite even.

The finals were keenly contested by both of them. Wang Hao was placing his first attacking strokes into Timo Boll’s backhand. Timo Boll was putting his fast forehand strokes into the body of Wang Hao. This match also went the same route of 7 games like the quarterfinals and semis, with the German winning the first, third, and sixth game, while Wang Hao prevailing in the second, fourth and fifth games.

In the deciding seventh game, Boll took the early lead of 6-0 before Wang Hao won the next 4 points. The crowd was fully behind Boll, which encouraged him to forge ahead to a 10-4 lead. Wang Hao was able to save the first match point. But Boll succeeded in the second match point to lift the Men’s World Cup for the second time in his playing career. He had won 11-3, 4-11, 11-8, 3-11, 11-13, 11-8, 11-5. The scoreline clearly indicates how keenly the match was fought. Boll later explained that his services and service returns were at peak levels, which had made it very difficult for the Chinese players to beat him.

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