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    Posted: 06/10/2018 at 10:21am
Zhang vs Harimoto.

China Open:  0-4
Japan Open:  3-4  (Jike lost the 7th game 11-13.)

Presumably both sides studied the previous match,
and studied the other side's playing against other players.

What made the second match so close?



Edited by skip3119 - 06/10/2018 at 10:22am
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jike is almost back
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote tom Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 06/10/2018 at 10:36am
would like to but didn't see the match, but I imagine from other descriptions given, it would have been something like: ZJK is getting more into shape and HT's style have to depend on the speed of the incoming ball which ZJK decreased.  it was whoever made more error / taking unsuccessful chances that lost
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote kindof99 Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 06/10/2018 at 10:53am
I was hoping ZJK to win this one badly. Credits to Harimoto at the final several points. Harimoto played very well at the end of the match.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote fatt Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 06/10/2018 at 12:47pm
At the beginning, I saw ZJK being patient and forcing HT's to rush and miss. ZJK wanted to play with his nerves and succeeded. ZJK was ahead 2-0. Then the kid decided to tone down and rally as well and he showed his mental strength: I clearly say the mental grip over the match switching from ZJK, who slowly let it go, questioning himself again like in the CHina Open, to HT who was starting to play free again and it was 2-2 in no time. At that point I thought it was over and the match would end up in favor of HT, 4-2. ZJK was not down and took a very close 5th game. The fact ZJK could not close 4-2 shows to what extent the kid is mentally solid and leveled at 3-3. The 5th game will remain in our memories for a long time: 2 flat hits against powerful topspin fh topspin showed that (one he missed though) he will not back away from the table and his willpower to stay there and not being pushed back is a boss attitude. In that last game, long rallies were more often won by HT and one supreme shot is to be underlined: when he saved a match point going for it and when he stepped around his bh to kill ZJK's serve at 11-11, we saw what the kid's heart is really made of: he will jump off a mountain and trust his arms to flap fast enough so he can fly! I bet ZJK was hurt there. Who would not be right after missing a match point? I admired ZJK enough for being back almost at his old highest level so I did not hope any of the 2 to win and just enjoyed live history in the making but after that shot I saw a hungry monster utterly convinced he will take this home and he did.

It's best live match I have seen since Ma Long's win in 2017 WTTC mens singles final.

As a side note, ZJK missing shots he should not miss happened too often and I trust him to fix that lack of consistency: I maybe believe the kid is THAT good so he makes ZJK miss but I frankly think that ZJK did not miss those shots in long rallies because the kid is too good but simply because ZJK did not fully come back yet. This match will achieve to fuel ZJK's inner fire to make him back 100% if his body permits, then he'll stay in those rallies and not miss shots that he is not supposed to, like those balls in his power zone that will "land" 5 inches too far, that's just a question of  adjustment, he is there but the last mile has yet to be walked through. I would not discard ZJK yet, if he can move around fine like yesterday night he will fix his consistency in the long rallies.
And you know what? in the CNT a battle has started: every player's performance v. HT will be a huge factor in the decision about who to send to Tokyo 2020: ZJK is determined to fully focus on HT so he cans say "I am in the best position in the CNT to beat the kid so let me play!", that's his strategy and if FZD or ML do not do well v. HT in the next year and 1/2, if one of them is totally owned by HT and ZJK finds his way to show that he is the one who has the best chances to beat the kid, ZJK will play in mens singles in Tokyo, mark my words! In fact that's ZJK's only chance to go to Tokyo since ML and FZD are so good: ZJK already identified that major factor in his very last shot at absolute greatness.

I really want to see ZJK play ML in a match where the winner will get a double grand slam; 1st one of them will need to beat the kid in the 1/2 final though; and FZD will not let the old guns force him to wait another 4 years: it's a looooong way to the bank for the 3 of them and controlling HT is the key.




Edited by fatt - 06/10/2018 at 12:49pm
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote tom Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 06/10/2018 at 1:03pm
Originally posted by fatt fatt wrote:

At the beginning, I saw ZJK being patient and forcing HT's to rush and miss. ZJK wanted to play with his nerves and succeeded. ZJK was ahead 2-0. Then the kid decided to tone down and rally as well and he showed his mental strength: I clearly say the mental grip over the match switching from ZJK, who slowly let it go, questioning himself again like in the CHina Open, to HT who was starting to play free again and it was 2-2 in no time. At that point I thought it was over and the match would end up in favor of HT, 4-2. ZJK was not down and took a very close 5th game. The fact ZJK could not close 4-2 shows to what extent the kid is mentally solid and leveled at 3-3. The 5th game will remain in our memories for a long time: 2 flat hits against powerful topspin fh topspin showed that (one he missed though) he will not back away from the table and his willpower to stay there and not being pushed back is a boss attitude. In that last game, long rallies were more often won by HT and one supreme shot is to be underlined: when he saved a match point going for it and when he stepped around his bh to kill ZJK's serve at 11-11, we saw what the kid's heart is really made of: he will jump off a mountain and trust his arms to flap fast enough so he can fly! I bet ZJK was hurt there. Who would not be right after missing a match point? I admired ZJK enough for being back almost at his old highest level so I did not hope any of the 2 to win and just enjoyed live history in the making but after that shot I saw a hungry monster utterly convinced he will take this home and he did.

It's best live match I have seen since Ma Long's win in 2017 WTTC mens singles final.

As a side note, ZJK missing shots he should not miss happened too often and I trust him to fix that lack of consistency: I maybe believe the kid is THAT good so he makes ZJK miss but I frankly think that ZJK did not miss those shots in long rallies because the kid is too good but simply because ZJK did not fully come back yet. This match will achieve to fuel ZJK's inner fire to make him back 100% if his body permits, then he'll stay in those rallies and not miss shots that he is not supposed to, like those balls in his power zone that will "land" 5 inches too far, that's just a question of  adjustment, he is there but the last mile has yet to be walked through. I would not discard ZJK yet, if he can move around fine like yesterday night he will fix his consistency in the long rallies.
And you know what? in the CNT a battle has started: every player's performance v. HT will be a huge factor in the decision about who to send to Tokyo 2020: ZJK is determined to fully focus on HT so he cans say "I am in the best position in the CNT to beat the kid so let me play!", that's his strategy and if FZD or ML do not do well v. HT in the next year and 1/2, if one of them is totally owned by HT and ZJK finds his way to show that he is the one who has the best chances to beat the kid, ZJK will play in mens singles in Tokyo, mark my words! In fact that's ZJK's only chance to go to Tokyo since ML and FZD are so good: ZJK already identified that major factor in his very last shot at absolute greatness.

I really want to see ZJK play ML in a match where the winner will get a double grand slam; 1st one of them will need to beat the kid in the 1/2 final though; and FZD will not let the old guns force him to wait another 4 years: it's a looooong way to the bank for the 3 of them and controlling HT is the key.



Sorry Fatt if I do not share your enthusiasm .  Watched the first 3 games, impressed with ZJK's performance relative to his recent form but HT just missed a lot and it was mostly whoever missed first lost the point.  The match held the attention because of the circumstances of the two players but otherwise not a great match, at lease not for the first 3 games.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote skip3119 Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 06/10/2018 at 1:27pm
ZJK and HT, both missed shots that they normally wouldn't miss - at a higher rate than they normally miss.

Thanks for detailed thorough analysis.

One improved match record against HT (after all, ZJK still lost), won't make ZJK the favorite to be sent to 2020 Olympics.

For the over-all records against all other players in the past year or two, ZJK still has the worst records (among ML, FZD and ZJK.)


Edited by skip3119 - 06/10/2018 at 1:29pm
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote fatt Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 06/10/2018 at 1:34pm
Originally posted by skip3119 skip3119 wrote:

ZJK and HT, both missed shots that they normally wouldn't miss - at a higher rate than they normally miss.

Thanks for detailed thorough analysis.

One improved match record against HT (after all, ZJK still lost), won't make ZJK the favorite to be sent to 2020 Olympics.

For the over-all records against all other players in the past year or two, ZJK still has the worst records (among ML, FZD and ZJK.)
I agree, I just say that there is a little crack in which ZJK is diving all the way: that little crack in the system is how the CNT will deal with HT and if one between FZD and ML is owned by HT and ZJK does well with him and all other players then he has a chance; it's actually his ONLY chance so I think he will put all his eggs in that basket studying and focusing on HT. After all, one who can figure HT will figure anybody else in the process so it's a pretty good strategy, too bad it relies on somebody else potential inability to deal with HT (it's never good to bet on another's lack of performance but it's the only way for ZJK).



Edited by fatt - 06/10/2018 at 1:41pm
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote The soul of rock Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 06/10/2018 at 1:35pm
Whoever wins the WTTC next year probably will get a slot; otherwise, it's pretty much a crime.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (1) Thanks(1)   Quote BeaverMD Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 06/10/2018 at 2:36pm
Originally posted by skip3119 skip3119 wrote:


What made the second match so close?


I think ZJK getting his tournament rhythm made the second match closer.  What a nailbiter by the way!!! Congrats to HT.

I did think that ZJK let the match slip away.  I place ZJK in the category of Waldner and Samsonov in that they have the talent that surpasses everyone else's but sometimes not the will to fight.  He should not have let HT get back into the third and fourth game.  This was a very winnable match.  Instead, he seemed a little too relaxed and cool.  Like Waldner and Vladi, he's a not a huge cho-er but a more uptempo mindset would have been welcomed.  His surprising cho to go up 10-9 in the 7th is what he should have been doing in the third.  I read a Federer interview after one of his victories where he said "I thought I played great.  Aggressive right from the start."  ZJK, and all of us for that matter, can learn from this.  It's hard to play relaxed the first couple of games, then when it ends up tight in the end, then you start switching to getting pumped up? No, you have to be pumped up right from the start.  Consistent mindset all the way through.

The conspiracy theorist in me always thinks that China wants to show the IOC that they are successfully "raising the wolf" in order to achieve their ultimate objective: have seven events in the Olympics (add MD and WD to the current MS, WS, MT, WT, and now XD).  The way I see it, gold and silver are pretty much guaranteed for WS.  For MS you'll always have the two guys win either gold and silver or with an upset silver and bronze.  MT and WT are guaranteed gold.  XD is unpredictable usually but I think they take gold or maybe silver with an upset or facing a mixed country team (is this allowed in OG like XX and Yang Haeun? I'm guessing no).  With the addition of MD and WD, add another two golds or at worst silver and gold respectively.  Now isn't a couple of losses of their superstars from the ITTF Pro Tour worth it to convince the ITTF and IOC to get two more events in the OG added? It would help the medal count especially with how other countries i.e. U.S. rack up with track and field and swimming events.

But conspiracy theory aside, HT played an excellent match against who, unless we forget, is a triple crown winner and two-time WTTC winner.  To this 14 y/o, I will say "Well done, young man.  Well done."
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote fortunateluck Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 06/11/2018 at 2:03am
That conspiracy theory above is interesting, but it's obvious that the drama of this 2018 Japanese Open final that went to deuce in the 7th game, could not have been planned in advance.

ZJK said the goal for his return is for 2020 Olympics. Since only 2 players from each country can enter the Olympics mens singles, it'll be interesting to see how they'll choose the players. ML and ZJK both have gold medals and ZJK also have a silver medal, so I believe they would both be favored to be selected, since it'll be a bigger honor for the country to have 2 gold medals in mens singles by the same player. In womens, 2 players have achievd this; Deng Yaping and Zhang Yining both have back to back gold medals in womens singles. But, there is no one who has 2 gold medals in mens singles. So, on a side note, for FZD to be selected for participation, as great a player as he is, pretty much dominating the world except ML, he'll have to step up and start beating ML consistently, and have no losses to anyone. Even then, because of the logic explained above, he may not be selected, if the higher ups decide ML and ZJK can do the job, even if they're not as strong as FZD.


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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (1) Thanks(1)   Quote seguso Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 06/11/2018 at 3:20am
I think Zjk style is outdated for the ABS ball. With this ball you don't have arc, regardless of how much you brush. So you need more direct impact. Instead, ZJK went long many times, because he is used to powerloops which a lot of brush and wrist component, which pass rather high on the net. But these loops don't land on the table anymore. He is trying to readjust but it will take many months.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Basquests Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 06/11/2018 at 3:33am
If fzd doesnt get picked over z jike, either he or chinas committee have failed.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote skip3119 Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 06/11/2018 at 9:20am
Originally posted by Basquests Basquests wrote:

If fzd doesnt get picked over z jike, either he or chinas committee have failed.
==============
Agree with you.
Just look at how many players from other countries who have beaten ZJK in the past 2 years,
the selection committee members will have to be out of their minds to pick ZJK over FZD.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote skip3119 Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 06/11/2018 at 11:00am
Just look at how many players from other countries who have beaten ZJK in the past 2 years:

ZJK's losses to the foreign players:
2016 Korea Open:  Chen Chien-An
2016 Qatar Open:  Dima
2017 WTTC:  Lee Sangsu
2017 China Open:  Yoshida Masaki
2017 German Open: Apolonia Tiago
2017 Qatar Open:  Koki Niwa
2018 Hong Kong Open:  Yoshimura Maharu
2018 Japan Open:  Harimoto Tomokazu.
======
Above are from ITTF head-to-head search of ZJK against all other players.
It missed one, because I remembered it.
2018 China Open:  Harimoto Tomokazu beat ZJK 4-0.

*** Since it can miss one, it may miss others. ***

Sending ZJK to 2020 Olympics, instead of FZD, will be kind of crazy.




Edited by skip3119 - 06/11/2018 at 11:03am
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote tom Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 06/11/2018 at 11:06am
you guys are talking about 2 years out.  a lot of things could happen 
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote fatt Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 06/11/2018 at 11:23am
Exactly, I always was a ml fan and got upset that ml didn’t go to London but I want to credit the fighters and ZJK is a fiery one. If he eats his pride and can come back and play mens singles in Tokyo, I will be in awe at the fact that in high level tt, while being the best is a major factor, it does not guarantee a spot.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote kindof99 Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 06/11/2018 at 11:44am
Originally posted by skip3119 skip3119 wrote:

Just look at how many players from other countries who have beaten ZJK in the past 2 years:

ZJK's losses to the foreign players:
2016 Korea Open:  Chen Chien-An
2016 Qatar Open:  Dima
2017 WTTC:  Lee Sangsu
2017 China Open:  Yoshida Masaki
2017 German Open: Apolonia Tiago
2017 Qatar Open:  Koki Niwa
2018 Hong Kong Open:  Yoshimura Maharu
2018 Japan Open:  Harimoto Tomokazu.
======
Above are from ITTF head-to-head search of ZJK against all other players.
It missed one, because I remembered it.
2018 China Open:  Harimoto Tomokazu beat ZJK 4-0.

*** Since it can miss one, it may miss others. ***

Sending ZJK to 2020 Olympics, instead of FZD, will be kind of crazy.

Really what is your point? Everyone is talking about the way that ZJK came back and you were talking about his loss in the past two years (but thank you for not citing ratingcentral). 

To me, ZJK needs to set his target for the 2020 Olympics to motivate himself to play. Very likely he will not play and he very likely knows it too. But without a motivation, his coming back looks very ridiculous and pointless.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote JediJesseS Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 06/11/2018 at 12:27pm
Tactically, the most significant change I noticed was that ZJK push to Harimoto forehand very often in the short game. Harimoto cannot open on this wing over the table like with backhand and so will push a longer ball back or attempt a risky forehand flip. Harimoto started to step way around onto forehand side to use backhand and was out of position or not stable for subsequent shots. This disrupted Harimoto and if you go back and watch the match you will see ZJK won a lot of points this way. When Harimoto was able to redirect balls with his backhand early ZJK could not keep up and lost a lot more of those type of points.

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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote ZingyDNA Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 06/11/2018 at 1:25pm
Originally posted by kindof99 kindof99 wrote:

Really what is your point? Everyone is talking about the way that ZJK came back and you were talking about his loss in the past two years (but thank you for not citing ratingcentral). 

To me, ZJK needs to set his target for the 2020 Olympics to motivate himself to play. Very likely he will not play and he very likely knows it too. But without a motivation, his coming back looks very ridiculous and pointless.


That's what he's trying to do. He said it in a recent interview. He knows chance is remote but it's not zero. I think there could be some pressure from high above, Sports Bureau, CNT, even the Party or w/e, to push him to stay. Their talent pool is not as deep as before and the younger generation (Fang, Yan, Liang, Yu, Zhou etc.) is not pushing the current generation. Fan ZD is an exception as he jumped the line and became the current generation already. They need someone to pressure the main top plays so they have a quality team for Tokyo. ZJK is a good candidate to do such as frankly they don't have too much to choose from. ZJK probably also would like another shot in the OG, because who wouldn't?   

Edited by ZingyDNA - 06/11/2018 at 1:26pm
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote JimT Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 06/11/2018 at 3:50pm
Perhaps getting angry at being beaten by a 14-yr old TH two times in a row will jolt ZJK back into his old form. Something to hope for. Generally I am not a big fan of ZJK as a sportsman but in 2011-2013 he was amazing. Not sure he can return to that level.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote blahness Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 06/11/2018 at 10:41pm
Unfortunately CNT places very high importance on major tournaments, so the real test is next year's 2019 WTTC...Ma Long is almost guaranteed a spot in Tokyo thanks to his win at 2017 WTTC, so the other singles spot can only go to Fan Zhendong or ZJK imo.... There's a very little chance that ZJK can snatch that place from Fan Zhendong unless FZD screws up or ZJK creates some miracle results.

The question is when will FZD win a WTTC?!
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote bbkon Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 06/12/2018 at 1:37am
Originally posted by BeaverMD BeaverMD wrote:

Originally posted by skip3119 skip3119 wrote:


What made the second match so close?




I think ZJK getting his tournament rhythm made the second match closer.  What a nailbiter by the way!!! Congrats to HT.

I did think that ZJK let the match slip away.  I place ZJK in the category of Waldner and Samsonov in that they have the talent that surpasses everyone else's but sometimes not the will to fight.  He should not have let HT get back into the third and fourth game.  This was a very winnable match.  Instead, he seemed a little too relaxed and cool.  Like Waldner and Vladi, he's a not a huge cho-er but a more uptempo mindset would have been welcomed.  His surprising cho to go up 10-9 in the 7th is what he should have been doing in the third.  I read a Federer interview after one of his victories where he said "I thought I played great.  Aggressive right from the start."  ZJK, and all of us for that matter, can learn from this.  It's hard to play relaxed the first couple of games, then when it ends up tight in the end, then you start switching to getting pumped up? No, you have to be pumped up right from the start.  Consistent mindset all the way through.

The conspiracy theorist in me always thinks that China wants to show the IOC that they are successfully "raising the wolf" in order to achieve their ultimate objective: have seven events in the Olympics (add MD and WD to the current MS, WS, MT, WT, and now XD).  The way I see it, gold and silver are pretty much guaranteed for WS.  For MS you'll always have the two guys win either gold and silver or with an upset silver and bronze.  MT and WT are guaranteed gold.  XD is unpredictable usually but I think they take gold or maybe silver with an upset or facing a mixed country team (is this allowed in OG like XX and Yang Haeun? I'm guessing no).  With the addition of MD and WD, add another two golds or at worst silver and gold respectively.  Now isn't a couple of losses of their superstars from the ITTF Pro Tour worth it to convince the ITTF and IOC to get two more events in the OG added? It would help the medal count especially with how other countries i.e. U.S. rack up with track and field and swimming events.

But conspiracy theory aside, HT played an excellent match against who, unless we forget, is a triple crown winner and two-time WTTC winner.  To this 14 y/o, I will say "Well done, young man.  Well done."



explain how is that theory..dump some tournaments so add 2 events to olympics? btw most of players i know in my club dont buy FZD lost to HT
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote thethinker Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 06/12/2018 at 3:50am
The match it's a match for ZJK to train to prepare to beat HT at a bigger match, period.
Chinese players, seem to me, don't play all their hands on regular tournaments, especially now that one must play many to get the ranking points. They usually play 20% of their best first three balls; so instead of well thought, tight serves to a weak spot it's slight long service, instead of drop shots it's long pushes, and instead of winners to the forehand it's loops to the backhand to fetch a block return. Haven't we seen this before when Miu Hirano play the Chinese women (the difference between a regular match and a must win match)? Someone please convince me this is how ML, ZJK, and FZD will play the HT at a big match at a worlds. Come on. The first three balls will be totally stronger and dominating. The attack strategy will be crystal clear but there is nothing HT can do.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote bbkon Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 06/12/2018 at 4:26am
Originally posted by thethinker thethinker wrote:

The match it's a match for ZJK to train to prepare to beat HT at a bigger match, period.
Chinese players, seem to me, don't play all their hands on regular tournaments, especially now that one must play many to get the ranking points. They usually play 20% of their best first three balls; so instead of well thought, tight serves to a weak spot it's slight long service, instead of drop shots it's long pushes, and instead of winners to the forehand it's loops to the backhand to fetch a block return. Haven't we seen this before when Miu Hirano play the Chinese women (the difference between a regular match and a must win match)? Someone please convince me this is how ML, ZJK, and FZD will play the HT at a big match at a worlds. Come on. The first three balls will be totally stronger and dominating. The attack strategy will be crystal clear but there is nothing HT can do.


even lgl said at he team world cuo that CNT top guns could lose to HT once in a while
I think pitchford will be more dangerous than HT like you said this tournaments are just for making adjustments. remember how many times chen chien han owned ZJK and Zjk owned taipei guy at olympics 4-0
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote koshkin Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 06/13/2018 at 1:30pm
To me it looks like Zhang Jike is changing his ball contact still.  He is almost there on the BH, but FH needs work.  The plastic ball flies differently, bounces differently and requires a different contract than the ball he used in his prime.  If his back holds up for a couple more tournaments, I think we will see a fair bit of a difference in how he plays.

Whether he can make it into 2018 Olympics is doubtful, but not outside the realm of possibility.  If both he and Ma Lon play well, I can see how CNT might let them play the Olympics, so they can both retire after that with one of them being a two time Olympic singles champion.  That will clear the path for the new generation for 2024 in Paris.  

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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote BeaverMD Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 06/13/2018 at 4:09pm
Originally posted by bbkon bbkon wrote:

Originally posted by BeaverMD BeaverMD wrote:

 
I think ZJK getting his tournament rhythm made the second match closer.  What a nailbiter by the way!!! Congrats to HT.

I did think that ZJK let the match slip away.  I place ZJK in the category of Waldner and Samsonov in that they have the talent that surpasses everyone else's but sometimes not the will to fight.  He should not have let HT get back into the third and fourth game.  This was a very winnable match.  Instead, he seemed a little too relaxed and cool.  Like Waldner and Vladi, he's a not a huge cho-er but a more uptempo mindset would have been welcomed.  His surprising cho to go up 10-9 in the 7th is what he should have been doing in the third.  I read a Federer interview after one of his victories where he said "I thought I played great.  Aggressive right from the start."  ZJK, and all of us for that matter, can learn from this.  It's hard to play relaxed the first couple of games, then when it ends up tight in the end, then you start switching to getting pumped up? No, you have to be pumped up right from the start.  Consistent mindset all the way through.

The conspiracy theorist in me always thinks that China wants to show the IOC that they are successfully "raising the wolf" in order to achieve their ultimate objective: have seven events in the Olympics (add MD and WD to the current MS, WS, MT, WT, and now XD).  The way I see it, gold and silver are pretty much guaranteed for WS.  For MS you'll always have the two guys win either gold and silver or with an upset silver and bronze.  MT and WT are guaranteed gold.  XD is unpredictable usually but I think they take gold or maybe silver with an upset or facing a mixed country team (is this allowed in OG like XX and Yang Haeun? I'm guessing no).  With the addition of MD and WD, add another two golds or at worst silver and gold respectively.  Now isn't a couple of losses of their superstars from the ITTF Pro Tour worth it to convince the ITTF and IOC to get two more events in the OG added? It would help the medal count especially with how other countries i.e. U.S. rack up with track and field and swimming events.

But conspiracy theory aside, HT played an excellent match against who, unless we forget, is a triple crown winner and two-time WTTC winner.  To this 14 y/o, I will say "Well done, young man.  Well done."



explain how is that theory..dump some tournaments so add 2 events to olympics? btw most of players i know in my club dont buy FZD lost to HT

LOL! Like I wrote, it's just a theory.  Let's take the XD event which has now been added to the 2020 OG.  The rationale of the ITTF and IOC was that table tennis received great TV ratings for Rio 2016.  But what they did not and will not mention is that if you look at the 2013, 2015, and 2017 XD WTTC first and second place winners, I'll save you the trouble, XX is the only Chinese.  In other words, they think it would be nice to hear a different national anthem playing even if it's just one event.

Now, let me get deeper in my theoretical rabbit hole but I will not pretend to know the inner machinations of getting events added in the OG.  But my mind is thinking that it starts off with votes in the ITTF before it gets presented to the IOC.  Now if I'm the head of Japan TT, I've got a pretty strong team both men and women so I would want to influence votes in favor of adding events.  The head of Japan TT calls his friend the head of Brazil TT "Hey pal, would you mind voting yes to adding MD and WD to the OG?" Brazil has a decent team but definitely not medal contenders.  JTT offers a 10-year Butterfly equipment deal for BTT.  Now wouldn't you vote yes if you were the head of BTT? You're not getting a medal so why would you care.  Same with Germany, they are contenders for a medal for the MD and WD.  So they would call their pals in Austria or Switzerland to get it done.

In the meantime, China will continue "raising the wolf".  Feed those victories in the ITTF Pro Tour.  Give the XD first place in the WTTC.  I do believe ML and FZD, not dumped, but sandbagged in their losses to HT.  Just look at the FH misses and non-chalant attitudes.  It was more of a sandbag I think i.e. allow for opportunities and openings.  This is not an overnight thing, more like a 2024 or 2028 effort.  I think the IOC is more receptive to adding events if they know that it is not a guaranteed gold for China all the time.  So if China wants this to happen, they need to loosen up a little bit on the WTTC.  I mean, winning first and second place in WTTC MD and WD all the time won't get it done.  For WD, it has been China for first and second place since 1989 LOL! That definitely won't persuade the IOC to add.  The CNT men are doing their part, LSW and DN better get with the program.  LOL! But then again, it's just my theory.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote ZhouZhekai Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 06/13/2018 at 4:22pm
I dont believe that they are losing on purpose/or sandbagging on purpose. Maybe they are not treating it as serious as a major event.  Mima Ito's Asian Championship run was real, and her beating every single other non CNT opponent just proves that she is a very real threat. So was Harimoto beating Timo Boll at 13 who can compete with the Chinese Top 4/5 and the second encounter being very close, as well as any other Non CNT member including Samsonow, Mizutani,  and Lee Sangsuu, which in my opinion are the best non CNT players.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote BeaverMD Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 06/13/2018 at 4:40pm
Originally posted by seguso seguso wrote:

I think Zjk style is outdated for the ABS ball. With this ball you don't have arc, regardless of how much you brush. So you need more direct impact. Instead, ZJK went long many times, because he is used to powerloops which a lot of brush and wrist component, which pass rather high on the net. But these loops don't land on the table anymore. He is trying to readjust but it will take many months.

You are not wrong.  After all, ZJK's decline started in 2014 after the plastic ball was adopted in ITTF tournaments.  But I don't think it's his technique that's the problem.  Let's not forget that he still won silver in 2016 Rio.  That is not achieved by someone with poor technique.  I believe it has to do with shot selection.  Here are some issues he should address:

1.  Sometimes, I see him FH power looping and when he gets a ball to his body, he would switch to BH power loop.  Once he switches to FH, he should commit to FH only and only use the BH when forced to by his opponent.  The misses in the HT match were usually from powerloop switch from FH to BH or vice versa.

2.  BH powerlooping is of course ZJK's signature shot.  However, when he starts on the FH mode and is forced to switch to BH loop, he sometimes does this while the ball is on the rise.  Theoretically, the Viscaria makes this shot manageable because of the energy absorption of the arylate.  However, with the plastic ball, the outgoing shot has less power.  The solution is to do what ML and FZD do.  When FH looping and the opponent forces them to switch to BH, no need to hit the ball on the rise.  Wait a little more, bend the legs, allowing to load more energy on the BH shot.  He tends to rush the BH shot when switching from a FH power loop.

The difficult thing for ZJK is he achieved his success using the off the bounce (ball on the rise) BH power loop.  So telling his body to change would take very serious commitment.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Tt Gold Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 06/13/2018 at 5:59pm
Even though zjk has bad records against foreigners, he always wins against them in big tournaments. In 2016 rio he was in horrible shape, but still managed to live up to liu's expectations.
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