It was a young man of all who changed things: Kay Stumper led the German table tennis team to victory in the quarter-finals against France at the World Cup in China.
After a tough fight to recover, the German table tennis men are in the semifinals of the World Team Championships in Chengdu / China and have already secured a medal. In the quarter-finals on Friday (7 October 2022), national team coach Jörg Roßkopf beat France 3-2 after falling 0-2. In the fight for participation in the final, the selection of the German Table Tennis Association (DTTB) will meet South Korea on Saturday.
“All I can think about is: Bravo, men! It was an incredible team effort. I am particularly happy for this team who believed in victory until the end and for this they were rewarded”, said the president of the DTTB. Claudia Herweg after the twelfth A German men’s team reached the semifinals of a World Cup (6xsilver, 5xsilver).
After the hard-fought semi-finals, Roßkopf was happy with a “super performance. It’s crazy to have a medal, but we want to continue with the team”. However, South Korea is a “really tough opponent”.
The young Stumper initiates the turnaround
Benedikt Duda and European singles champion Dang Qiu initially lost their opening single before 19-year-old Kay Stumper began the breakthrough with his 3-1 win over Jules Rolland. Dang Qiu then tied.
In the decisive match, Duda kept his nerve and defeated Felix Lebrun 3-0. As at the 2018 World Team Championships in Halmstad, Germany reached the round of 16 again: four years ago the German selection had won silver at the end.
“It was amazing”
“It’s a sport,” said Duda, 28. “It was a tough defeat in the beginning and I was angry with myself. But I knew: we will come back and have our fifth game. Nobody likes to play when the score is 2-2. But I knew: Momentum is on our side, the French are a bit bruised. The finish was fantastic. “
“Everyone is incredibly strong”
“Germany should never be underestimated, no matter which team we come with. We have a very strong squad. All four players are incredibly strong,” said Dang Qiu. “Even without the big names, we made it to the semifinals and it will still be tomorrow, give it all “.
In China, the German team will have to do without the historic guarantors of success, Timo Boll and Dimitrij Ovtcharov (after injuries), as well as their young father Patrick Franziska. The trio had won Olympic team silver in 2021.
Teams group together
The course of this World Cup reflects the development of international table tennis. Many teams are repositioning themselves for the 2024 Olympic Games in Paris. Especially in Europe, young players like Dang Qiu with his European title, Swede Truls Möregardh with second place at the individual world championships or the Lebrun brothers are causing a sensation. Even in South Korea’s opponents semi-final, four of the five players are no older than 24. Only the hosts and China favorites still have individual world champion Fan Zhendong and individual Olympic champion Ma Long at the table.
Women on Friday in the semifinals against Japan
German women are also at the forefront in Chengdu. National team coach Tamara Boros will fight in the semi-finals on Friday (13:30 CEST) against Olympic silver medalist Japan for first place in the post-war final. Bronze is already certain regardless of the result. It is already the first World Cup medal for a German women’s team since bronze in Moscow in 2010.