The 7th world para table tennis championship finished with the final stage in Celje on Saturday. SPINT 2018 took place between 17-20 October.

It was the first world championship ever to only feature singles events, rather than the team events as well.

The Chinese collection

The women competed in ten classes, men in eleven. South Korea won three women’s titles (China won two golds), while Belgium was the only country with two golds in men’s categories. China won the most medals, 16, overall. Slovenia had three debutants competing: Luka Trtnik, Primož Kancler and Barbara Meglič finished the tournament without a win in their nine duels in the preliminary group stage.

“We are very satisfied with the event in Celje. We have surpassed expectations and have set very high standards for future organizers. I am also happy to say the competition finished with no injuries. Celje was very welcoming and there were no problems with the transportation between Celje, Laško and Rimske Toplice. We’ve had high praise from the participants on the logistics, accommodation and the beautiful Zlatorog Arena, which was made wheelchair accessible everywhere,” Damijan Lazar, NPC Slovenia President and chair of the organizing committee summarized the event.

:: OFFICIAL SPINT 2018 RESULTS

“There won’t be another championship like this,” Gorazd Vecko, a great and respected name in international para sports who was also technical director of the competition in Celje, went even further.

“I left three Chinese players behind. I am overjoyed. I didn’t know what shape I was in before coming to Celje. I simply took it match by match. I had had too much respect for the Chinese players before Rio 2016, but now I feel they get nrvous when they see me,” the Serbian Borislava Peric Rankovic was in a good mood after winning the title in her competition class SM4, beating two Chinese players – Ying Zhou (3-0) and Miao Zhang (3-1) – in the semi final and final.

“It wasn’t easy. Alvaro Valera is an exceptional player. It was a very tactical match. I had no other chance of beating him. I am happy with the title and ma game, I won 3-0. But now I would like to add the European title to my golds from the Paralympics and this world championship,” the Danish Peter Rosenmeier, the new SM6 champion, revealed. “It was difficult, although I am expected to keep winning and winning,” said the Natalia Partyka from Poland, who had to do her best against the 18-year-old Sophie Amanda Walloe from Denmark for her 3-1 win.

Special thanks

At the closing ceremony, NPC Slovenia president Damijan Lazar gave special thanks to the partners and individuals that made exceptional contributions to the execution of this prominent event: Mateja Pintar Pustovrh (SPINT 2018 ambassador), Petra Sörling (ITTF vice president), Tina Cipot (head of corporate communications at Lidl Slovenia), Mojca Leskovar (Thermana Laško board member), Marjan Hribar (STTA president), Gorazd Vecko (SPINT 2018 technical director) and Kensuke Tsuchiya (president of Toyota Adria).

The Dunking Devils acrobatics group ended the ceremony on a high note.

* SPINT 2018 world champions:
– women:
– SF 1-2:
Su Yeon Seo (KOR)
– SF3:
Juan Xue (CHN)
– SF4:
Borislava Perić Ranković (SRB)
– SF5:
Oejeong Kang (KOR)
– SF6:
Marina Litovčenko (UKR)
– SF7:
Kelly Van Zon (NED)
– SF8:
Mao Jingdian (CHN)
– SF9:
Kun-hea Kim (KOR)
– SF10:
Natalia Partyka (POL)
– SF11:
Jelena Prokofjeva (RUS)

– moški:
– SM1:
Hyeon Uk Kim (KOR)
– SM2:
Fabien Lamirault (FRA)
– SM3:
Panfeng Feng (CHN)
– SM4:
Nesim Turan (TUR)
– SM5:
Ali Ozturk (TUR)
– SM6:
Peter Rosenmeier (DEN)
– SM7:
Jordi Morales (ESP)
– SM8:
Ross William Wilson (GBR)
– SM9:
Laurens Devos (BEL)
– SM10:
Patryk Chojnowski (POL)
– SM11:
Florian Van Acker (BEL)