(by Ian Marshall, ITTF Publications Manager)
Vladimir Miko, mainstay of Czechoslovakian success, passes away
It is with great sadness that the recent death of Vladimir Miko is announced; he was 74 years old.
Born on Monday 22nd March 1943 in Krupina in the country now known as Slovakia; Vladimir Miko was a vital member of the Czechoslovakian team throughout the 1960s.
He started playing table tennis in 1951 at STO Tatran Krupina, before in 1957 moving to Sparta Prague, where he was coached by established internationals Ladislav Stipek and Ludvik Vyhnanovsky.
In 1959 he joined the national team, competing in seven World Championships, an event in those days held on a biennial basis. Notably in 1967 in Stockholm he reached the quarter-finalsof the Men’s Singles event and in harness with his erstwhile partner, Jaroslav Stanek, was a Men’s Doubles bronze medallist.
Additionally he played in five European Championships, his most successful being in 1964 in Malmö and two years later in London. In Malmö, he won the Men’s Doubles, as always partnering Jaroslav Stanek, whilst also being the Mixed Doubles runner up with Marta Luzova.
Two years later in England’s capital city he reached the final of the Men’s Singles event, losing to Sweden’s Kjell Johansson. Earlier he had won the Mixed Doubles title partnering Marta Luzova and was the Men’s Doubles runner up with Jaroslav Stanek.
In international open tournaments he enjoyed success after success, reaching no.9 on the Men’s World Rankings in 1967; his international career ending in 1970. In 1971, he assumed the role of Luxembourg national coach, a position he held until 1973, before becoming the Men’s Team national coach for Czechoslovakia until 1990.
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