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The story of the German Table Tennis team at Beijing 2008


​Table Tennis ​is the biggest sport in China, it has a completely different standing and we were being greeted differently there than we would in countries like Switzerland in Europa or America. I remember it well, Dirk Nowitzki was carrying the flag in the opening ceremony, Timo and me were just trotting behind somewhere a few metres away and if you have such a big guy in the front carrying the flag then that is very special. Yeah, you just feel very proud and a bit flashed from what you see. It’s a unique experience. In Beijing, we competed in the Team and Individual event, starting with the Team event. And yeah, it just started step by step and it was good for us that the competition started with the group stages, where we played first against Croatia and won 3-0 but every match was on a knife edge. In the next round, we played against Singapore where we won 3-1 as I lost against their top player, Gao Ning. And the last match against Canada was a mere formality, which we won 3-0 and reached our goal finishing first in the group. Three very tough opponents and a tough double with Kan Yo, Jun Mitzutani who was a world class player and Seiya Kishikawa, who we knew well from training. So we had a tough challenge right away. I was first in the box and the Arena was full. They were about 8,000 people but they were louder than an arena in Germany which has twice as many people. So my heartbeat was quite high. And then when I was up 10-8 in the fifth set, I was already celebrating and saying: “Come on Dima, one more point and you’ve done it!”. And then all of a sudden it was 10-10 again and every point seemed like an eternity to me. And then when I had won the match and fell to the floor everything seemed like in a trance and I knew that I have done a huge step for the team towards winning our medal. Timo then continued with a very strong match against Mitzutani which I believe finished 3-1, quite a clear win and we were leading 2-0 overall and knew we only have to get one more point. So we made the decision to send the supposed weaker double with Christian and me into the race to give Timo another chance to play the singles later on as we saw that as a bigger chance for us. We sadly lost the doubles closely. Afterwards Christian had to go in the box and play the game of his life and he dominated Kan Yo, the top player from Japan but couldn’t seal the deal. He had match points and gave a high lead away and I was trembling and thought: “dude, one more point and we have done it!”. But was lost on a knife’s edge and Timo had to go in the box again. After the game I had to go outside to take a breath of fresh air, I thought I was going to have a nervous breakdown. Timo was back then the number 5 or 6 in the world, Kishikawa was maybe number 50 so everyone expected a win from Timo, which of course he knew as well, which increased the pressure on him tremendously. Nonetheless, he had a good start and was leading 2-0 but then Seiya came back and it was 2-2. In the last set, the fifth and final set, I was practically with him in the box. I was thinking Timo do this serve you might get that response, follow it up like that and hopefully it will work and I remember taking small sips from my water bottle because I was so nervous. I have never been so nervous during a match that I haven’t played myself. I was so engrossed in the match it was unbelievable. That much pressure, I don’t even have when I play myself, it is easier to play yourself. I don’t remember what was going through my head but when Timo scored the last and final point, I just leaped from my chair what felt like 3 metres high over the barrier and was almost already near him. To just share the common joy and it was simply… to sum it up in one word we were just happy. And we remembered that moment for the days and even years to come. And you could see from our reaction that we celebrated it like a gold medal even before we played the final because we knew that it was going to be hard to beat China. And then I had to play Wan Hao, who I watched 4 years ago on TV when he played the final in Athens, which was incredible. And Wang Liqin and Ma Lin as well, all 3 of them were absolute legends in Table Tennis. And so to play against such legends in the final was just unbelievable. And then the worst thing happened in such an important match that can happen to a Table Tennis player, I started with a fault on the serve, which happens very very rarely to us and to me as well. And then the second serve slipped a bit half long to the left so he could attack it right away and with what a speed, I only thought “oh that is a rather bad start here against Wang Hao.” I did improve upon that during the game and played to my standards again and then it was a very good game but there was just not enough to get me back in the game, but I enjoyed every second and every hit. We tried our best and I think we played better than any other nation against China. Winning a medal, a silver medal in Table Tennis, especially at home of Table Tennis in China was so special and the atmosphere in the arena and everything else it was just a dream come true for us.

David Frank

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85 COMMENTS

  1. KeybladeScar Posted on June 18, 2016 at 8:11 am

    This is my favorite sport during the Summer Olympics I can't to see it in Rio this year 😃😃

    Reply
  2. M Posted on June 18, 2016 at 8:33 am

    Endlich versteh ich das mal xD

    Reply
  3. Felipe.1636 Posted on June 18, 2016 at 3:39 pm

    The best sport 🙂

    Reply
  4. JFK Posted on June 18, 2016 at 3:49 pm

    wow. not even a minute in and americas alreadt getting dissed.

    Reply
  5. DrRxGirl Posted on June 18, 2016 at 4:33 pm

    So the Olympics will still be in Brazil despite the finding that a superbug that causes meningitis is in the water that people have to swim and etc. in? Despite the Zika virus? This is huge liability and people need to wake up and realize this. FYI, the superbug that was found cause fatality in almost 50% of cases.

    Reply
  6. Renan Dorado Posted on June 19, 2016 at 3:38 am

    #Beijing2008

    Reply
  7. lola Doudoune Posted on June 19, 2016 at 2:41 pm

    First!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    Reply
  8. naftali c Posted on June 21, 2016 at 1:59 pm

    What song is that towards the end ? i like it.

    Reply
  9. DopeKicks Posted on June 28, 2016 at 12:50 pm

    Sehr geiles Video 🙂 Mega Gänsehaut bekommen !
    Dieses Jahr in Rio geht es rund

    Reply
  10. Waffenknecht Posted on July 16, 2016 at 4:54 pm

    What is the song called at the start (bin deutsch :))

    Reply
  11. pudi5858 Posted on July 20, 2016 at 9:15 am

    Is there anywhere where i can find the full matches?

    Reply
  12. Leaf Posted on August 2, 2016 at 7:16 pm

    Whoever else cried tears of joyce at 5:02 ? =)

    Reply
  13. Jepherson Roach Posted on August 6, 2016 at 2:27 pm

    Excelente!

    Reply
  14. sam chen Posted on August 6, 2016 at 5:29 pm

    Good for you buddy! You really made history that day!

    Reply
  15. drogiakabest Posted on November 5, 2016 at 1:20 am

    Great throwback video !

    Reply
  16. Jonas Posted on December 10, 2016 at 2:21 pm

    TT-Spieler sind wenigstens nicht so arrogant wie fussball und verdienen nicht so viel Geld ( unverdient )

    Reply
  17. niki Ross Posted on January 18, 2017 at 3:03 pm

    TT ist kein Sport

    Reply
  18. Zeus Posted on April 1, 2017 at 9:16 pm

    what is the match of min 2:39?

    Reply
  19. Sergio Caraballo Posted on April 17, 2017 at 5:48 pm

    Mis respecto

    Reply
  20. Jerome Umali Posted on June 10, 2017 at 11:57 pm

    timo is a legend..

    Reply
  21. delfin reiterin Posted on September 22, 2017 at 3:27 am

    Timo ist eine Legende im Tischtennis und mein Idol ich spiel selber seit 4 einhalb Jahren Tischtennis mein traum ist es irgentwann bei den Olympischen Spielen zu spielen

    Reply
  22. Lucas Mathes Posted on September 27, 2017 at 12:09 pm

    Da sieht man wie stark tischtennis ist

    Reply
  23. Lucas Mathes Posted on September 27, 2017 at 12:10 pm

    Meiner meinung nach wird tischtennis unterschätzt

    Reply
  24. Muhammad Sohaib Imran Posted on October 5, 2017 at 7:43 pm

    At the end it felt really badass to see the Chinese players trimph over the German squad…. No disrespect for thr germans it's only my opinion

    Reply
  25. Renee Sun Posted on November 11, 2017 at 4:53 am

    I love Timo and Dimitrij. They are two honorable gentlemen with great skills and humble attitude. I'm from China and these two have a lot of fans like me here.

    Reply
  26. Taylor Brown Posted on February 1, 2018 at 12:12 am

    Moral of the story: No one messes with China.

    Reply
  27. Tuzz Nation Posted on February 9, 2018 at 1:24 am

    yall go to play pingpong and competing for bronze.

    Reply
  28. Aaryn Sokolowski Posted on February 9, 2018 at 12:47 pm

    1000th like yay (inside my mind im like YESSSSSSSSSS!)

    Reply
  29. Philip S Posted on February 11, 2018 at 1:53 pm

    and now dima is number 1 of the world

    Reply
  30. Linda Jürgensen Posted on February 12, 2018 at 11:41 am

    Tischtennis ist so ein unterschätzter Sport!

    Reply
  31. L00kiii Posted on February 17, 2018 at 5:28 am

    Ich glaube 2020 geht was… ich habe es so im Gefühl das Deustchaldn Tema Gold holt und Timo Boll im einzel auch Gold und dann zurück tritt…

    Reply
  32. fahmi faishol Posted on February 17, 2018 at 9:01 am

    dimo 19 years age

    Reply
  33. sync232 Posted on February 18, 2018 at 4:42 pm

    Doesnt sound like a german name.

    Reply
  34. Kawaii Potato Posted on February 18, 2018 at 6:03 pm

    That’s depressing why would u make it jut to tell me they failed

    Reply
  35. Ali Erkmen Posted on March 2, 2018 at 1:28 pm

    what a game

    Reply
  36. MrJohnoss Posted on March 7, 2018 at 10:39 pm

    ya eu percebo o que alemao esta a dizer e tudo umas legendas eram precisas boa sorte em ler isto

    Reply
  37. Herbig EDITION Posted on March 17, 2018 at 11:38 pm

    Arschgeile Nummer Jungs

    Reply
  38. wert kol Posted on March 27, 2018 at 3:40 pm

    And the next olympic, China will be beaten by Germany.

    Reply
  39. Promo Rocker Posted on April 7, 2018 at 4:20 am

    Undefeatable spirit…

    Reply
  40. Vishal Mishra's Posted on April 27, 2018 at 1:15 pm

    I was so ignorant till date that no body can give a challenge to China in tt

    Reply
  41. motube Posted on April 30, 2018 at 5:18 pm

    Wieso dachte ich Ovtcharov ist TrilluXe? XD

    Reply
  42. jacqueline beroiza Posted on May 11, 2018 at 7:55 pm

    I love ma long timo dimitrij ma Li,,

    Reply
  43. Bat Man Posted on May 15, 2018 at 8:18 pm

    they lost. why they making this story about losers???

    Reply
  44. Grey Wind Posted on May 20, 2018 at 12:36 am

    Name of song at the end?

    Reply
  45. Bogdan Ionescu Posted on May 28, 2018 at 8:33 am

    Roses are red
    Violets are blue
    The title is in english
    The video should be too

    Reply
  46. detective c Posted on June 4, 2018 at 1:05 pm

    Timo Boll is so hot

    Reply
  47. Spectre Posted on June 12, 2018 at 10:36 am

    I'm a Chinese fan. Huge respect to this German team, wonderful performance!

    Reply
  48. Vik Okkult Posted on July 5, 2018 at 6:45 pm

    The motherland of tabletennis is England not China ^^

    Reply
  49. バウンドZero Posted on July 21, 2018 at 12:42 pm

    激闘ですね。

    Reply
  50. IRazor656I Posted on August 9, 2018 at 6:42 pm

    1:46 japanischer Chinese?

    Reply
  51. takoyucky Posted on August 12, 2018 at 7:07 pm

    What’s so special about this story? They just did well and that’s it. No overcoming adversity or anything

    Reply
  52. Falk M Posted on August 24, 2018 at 9:30 pm

    Dimitrij Ovcharov… so heißen Deutsche also angeblich im 21. Jahrhundert. Immerhin wird die Ausrottung der Deutschen im digitalen Zeitalter für die Nachwelt festgehalten.

    Reply
  53. сука блять Posted on August 25, 2018 at 8:52 am

    Wo ist mein kaffee

    Reply
  54. ade gusman Posted on August 27, 2018 at 8:54 am

    This video make want to watch boom by pod

    Reply
  55. RollingAroundWithKitties Posted on October 6, 2018 at 11:57 pm

    Beautiful story!

    Reply
  56. Benny Dook Posted on October 21, 2018 at 1:10 am

    Wish for no more dictatorship

    Reply
  57. Subhradeep Kundu Posted on October 31, 2018 at 6:54 pm

    Germans are born fighters. They can win any match if they wanted to win. Nothing is impossible for them. Love from india

    Reply
  58. Timo Krumm Posted on December 2, 2018 at 2:46 pm

    Tischtennis ist einfach geil!!!

    Reply
  59. Don't Kill Yourself Before You're Dead Posted on December 2, 2018 at 11:14 pm

    China the land of the small. They do love cute things. Small balls, small rackets, small people, small eyes and small peepee.

    Reply
  60. Roman Starowoitow Posted on December 2, 2018 at 11:40 pm

    Er sagt China hahah die haben gegen Japan gewonnen lul

    Reply
  61. Cynical Idealist Posted on December 4, 2018 at 9:47 am

    ঠিক বলছেন ভাই।

    Reply
  62. Ryan Hong Posted on December 21, 2018 at 5:59 am

    What is the background music?

    Reply
  63. DD GNP Posted on December 24, 2018 at 11:53 pm

    "We did the best anyone could against China
    CHINA WINS 3-0

    Reply
  64. Ben Posted on December 28, 2018 at 5:55 am

    But China won 3-0 in the Finals. What a mismatch.

    Reply
  65. ejijojo Posted on January 19, 2019 at 11:53 pm

    呵呵 官方啥時做中國隊的特輯 明明是世界上最強的球隊

    Reply
  66. Tru Hawaii Posted on January 21, 2019 at 7:27 am

    They still sound like their saying something dangerous.

    Reply
  67. Oliver Velazquez Posted on January 28, 2019 at 10:29 pm

    No pudieron conquistar Europa, ahora quieren conquistar el ping pong alv v:

    Reply
  68. T3KK sTasY Posted on February 7, 2019 at 10:36 pm

    Und warum verdienen jetzt Fußballer mehr als Tischtennis-spieler

    Reply
  69. Jacob Wheeler Posted on February 18, 2019 at 11:55 pm

    Ping pong isn’t a sport

    Reply
  70. Boris Graell Posted on March 6, 2019 at 7:24 pm

    Mizutani* not mitzutani

    Reply
  71. heilandiger Posted on March 9, 2019 at 8:20 am

    "gefläscht"?

    Reply
  72. Sam Peng Posted on March 18, 2019 at 3:09 am

    PSA: turn on the captain, it's in English, if you can't understand German, so i you can enjoy this piece.

    Reply
  73. hou leung Posted on March 23, 2019 at 7:01 pm

    i m a super fan of Timo from China

    Reply
  74. Krusten Kaese Posted on March 24, 2019 at 4:55 pm

    Greetings from Germany to my Chinese friends!

    Reply
  75. Ming Xuan Benedict Teo Posted on March 26, 2019 at 2:58 pm

    Why badminton don't have 5 sets like table tennis is because the matches are already long enough with 21 points compared to table tennis 11 points and badminton also has a possiblity to deuce to 30

    Reply
  76. WalkMan wang Posted on April 5, 2019 at 12:21 pm

    well done,打的不错啊,得了银牌很不容易了,毕竟有强大的国乒

    Reply
  77. Joaquin Boutsen Posted on April 10, 2019 at 3:11 pm

    am i the only non german speaking german here

    Reply
  78. EDGYMACHINE Posted on May 23, 2019 at 9:58 am

    Sieht aus wie Trilluxe

    Reply
  79. Zenon W. Posted on June 23, 2019 at 5:22 pm

    A gdzie my w każdej dziedzinie.Tylko kasa idzie na boki w polskich związkach.Juz od dzieciaka widzialem od zaplecza."WOLNOŚĆ SŁOWA"

    Reply
  80. Wildes Thomas Posted on July 5, 2019 at 10:04 pm

    SCHINA!!!!!

    Reply
  81. Jasmine Johnston Posted on August 15, 2019 at 10:22 pm

    Some people might think it’s silly that ping pong is an Olympic event, but it still counts as a sport and I think it fits. China usually dominates the table tennis matches and I’m expecting a lot of action on the table in Tokyo next year!

    Reply
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