(by Simon Daish)
12 years on can Timo Boll reclaim title glory?
There was an air of joy across Europe 12 years ago as Timo Boll emerged victorious at the final hurdle of what was formerly known as the ITTF Pro Tour Grand Finals to become only the second player from the continent to lift the trophy
Since then the gold medal has eluded the grasp of European competitors at the tournament, but can Timo Boll repeat his amazing achievement from 2005 and capture his second title at the event when he takes to the table at the Seamaster 2017 ITTF World Tour Grand Finals taking place in Astana, Kazakhstan from Thursday 14th to Sunday 17th December?
Timo Boll, 36, heads to Kazakhstan in promising form following a positive outing at the recent Seamaster 2017 ITTF World Tour Platinum German Open held last month.
Seeded fourth for the Men’s Singles draw Timo Boll outperformed expectations to finish in the silver medal position in Magdeburg, claiming solid victories over the likes of Frenchman Simon Gauzy and China’s Lin Gaoyuan on his way to the final.
The German legend also received the runner up prize at the ITTF World Tour competitions in the Czech Republic and China, but it was the Korean city of Incheon where Boll returned to title winning ways.
Success at the Korea Open saw Boll lift his first ITTF World Tour Men’s Singles trophy for seven years, securing his 19th title in the category overall.
Away from the ITTF World Tour Boll has also been in impressive shape with fine performances at two of the biggest events of the year.
Competing in front of his adoring home fanbase in Düsseldorf Boll was the sole European representative to reach the Men’s Singles last eight at the Liebherr 2017 ITTF World Championships, producing a bright display against the eventual champion Ma Long at the quarter-finals stage.
More recently Boll appeared at the Liebherr 2017 ITTF-Men’s World Cup and was one of the standout stars of the show, registering fantastic results against Lin Gaoyuan and Ma Long ahead of his second place finish in Liège, Belgium.
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