Dima Ovtcharov: Busy Property
*Original Article appeared at Tischtennis Budesliga (ttbl.de) – Original in German.
At the Olympic Games in Rio the German Team will be led by Germany’s No. 1 Dimitrij Ovtcharov. So far, he has always felt comfortable at the Olympics – two games, three medals. We talked to the 27-year-old about the Olympics and the TTBL ALL STAR DAY in Fulda.
On July 30, you will fly to Rio for the Olympic Games. What does you preparation look like until then?
We have the preparatory courses in Dusseldorf. Here we will bring us together as a team for fine tuning and very focused work together. Then there is the Olympic preparation tournament in singles in Hamm and another singles tournament in Worms as well.
On the way to Rio, you will also participate in TTBL ALL STAR DAY (July 23) in Fulda. The German team plays against Austria in an Olympic format of team competitions. Is this a kind of dress rehearsal before the games?
It is definitely again a very good competition about to start in Rio. The Austrians have really developed well in recent years and have become tough European competitors who will challenge us well in Fulda. Such competitions are always a good test. I am especially pleased by the Olympic format, this is so special.
Last year at the European Championships you lost the final against the ÖTTV team. Will you be seeking revenge in Fulda? And what do you expect from this event?
In particular, I expect a high quality event. All players are hot right now. We want to give this to the German fans before flying to Brazil. I hope, of course, to see a full house in Fulda.
The TTBL ALL STAR DAY will celebrate 50 years of Bundesliga table tennis. What are your very first memories of the Table Tennis Bundesliga?
My very first Bundesliga experience – I had to gather with my home club Schwalbe Tündern. It was a real adventure, I was only 17 years old. My very first game was against Bojan Tokic – it made me a bit weak in the knees.
Back to the Olympics: For most athletes, the Olympic Games are the biggest event ever. What fascinates you personally about the games?
This is so hard to describe. The whole atmosphere is simply unique. The best athletes of the world together in a village, all in top form with the aim to deliver their very best performance. In 2008, I was sitting at a table with Kobe Bryant and Michael Phelps at the breakfast table – and in 2012 I was present when the Queen came past. The tension in the air, we are all just incredibly happy to be there. That’s quite an incredible, positive mood. And if you perform well as an athlete, it is even better.
In the Olympics Dimitrij Ovtcharov is the DTTB medal collector – You have won a bronze and a silver, just missing one precious metal. Is a gold medal realistic?
For this, I have been working for a long time every day as hard as I can. I now have three medals in the bag, since it would be strange to say that I’d fly to Rio just for the atmosphere. The first aim is to medal, both in the team and in the individual. Whether there is a chance at the gold, depends on many factors. I’ll give it everything.
Thanks for the interview, Dimitrij Ovtcharov.
At the Olympic Games in Rio the German Team will be led by Germany’s No. 1 Dimitrij Ovtcharov. So far, he has always felt comfortable at the Olympics – two games, three medals. We talked to the 27-year-old about the Olympics and …