Bastian Steger's club is a step closer to the Bundesliga's final and probably to the title after defeating Ochsenhausen in the first leg match of the Bundesliga's semifinals. However, Saarbrucken's player had to fight harder than expected to reach victory. Kirill Skachkov did a great job replacing recently recovered Tiago Apolonia as player n° 1 by beating Bojan Tokic and Joao Monteiro but it was enough to secured his team victory. With this result, Ochsenhausen must win by 3:0 or 3:1 to book a place in the final.
Saarbrucken 3-2 Ochsenhausen
Bojan Tokic and Kirill skachkov met in the first match. Tokic got the firs game by 11:7 but Skachkov leveled by 11:5. Since then the Russian player took control of the match and won the next game by 11:5. Despite that, Tokic continued fighting but Skachkov managed to win by 14:12 and secured the first point for Ochsenhausen.
Joao Monteiro and Andrej Gacina clashed in the second encounter. Gacina won the first game by 11:8 but Monteiro leveled by 11:9 and then got the next game by 11:7. However, Gacina recovered and took the fourth game by 11:8. In the deciding game, Monteiro won by 12:10 and leveled for Saarbrucken.
Bastian Steger faced Tiago Apolonia in the third match. Steger took the lead after winning the first game by 11:9 but Apolonia leveled by 12:10. In the third game Apolonia had no chance and was swept by 11:4. Finally, Steger stood victorious by 11:8 and gave the second point to Saarbrucken.
Joao Monteiro met Kirill Skachkov in the fourth match. Skachkov got the first game by 11:6 but Monteiro won the next two games by 11:7 and 11:8. The Russian player didn't give up and leveled after taking the fourth game by 11:8. In the fifth game, Skachkov kept his rhythm and sealed his victory by 11:7 forcing to a deciding match.
Bojan Tokic faced Andrej Gacina in the fifth encounter. Tokic won the first game by 11:6 but Gacina leveled by 11:5. However, Tokic recovered and got the third game by 11:6. This time Tokic didn't fail and sealed victory for Saarbrucken by 13:11.
The second leg match wil be held on next Saturday at 19:00 (ECT).
Photo and info. source: mytischtennis.de (foto: Roscher) - ttbl.de