With a 1-0 advantage in their head-to-head matchup, Fan Zhendong holds a slight edge over E. Lebesson. The Chinese superstar and his compatriot Wang Chuquin advanced to the semifinals of the 2020 Qatar Open by defeating E. Lebesson and Tristan Flore, 3-1.
E. Lebesson Olympic Games
When the World Table Tennis Championships were held in November of last year, Fan Zhendong was the victor. He won by a score of 4-3 against his compatriot Ma Long.
Since E. Lebesson and his partner made it to the semi-finals of the mixed doubles tournament in Tokyo, he is in fine form. After teaming up with Yuan Jia Nan, the Frenchman lost 4-0 to the Chinese duo of Xu Xin and Liu Shiwen.
Zhendong competed in the Chinese Olympic Scrimmages in May 2021 as a warmup. Fan beat out Xu Xin, a competitor from the same country, to win the second round.
Also competing for bronze today is E. Lebesson. He teams up with Yuan Jia to take on Cheng-I-Ching and Lin Yun-Ju of Chinese Taipei.
The previous year, Fan Zhendong’s record was an impressive 18-2.
Will Fan Zhendong’s Game Suffer Because of the Cramped Conditions?
Zhendong, a winner at the 2014 Youth Olympics, will be competing in his first Olympic Games. The standard length for a table tennis court is 7×14 metres, however the president of the Chinese Table Tennis Association, Liu Guoliang, had previously stated that the playing space in Tokyo was only 6×11 metres.
Because of this, Zhendong has to work on his devastating side serve. It would be important for the Chinese star to keep his serves from going over the net. If he wants to improve, he needs to alter his typical approach to taking shots.
Moreover, the 24-year-old is subject to the new regulations put in place to prevent the spread of Covid-19. Fan Zhendong should not clean the table with his hands or blow on the ball. It will take him some time to become used to the new procedures that have been established.
Will E. Lebesson be Able to Maintain his Stellar Performance?
E. Lebesson and Yuan Jia Nan had a terrific climate-testing experience in Tokyo, reaching the semifinals of the mixed doubles competition. Since the beginning of 2021, the world’s number 40 in singles play has seen a lot of ups and downs. Frenchman is winless (1-3) thus far.
The 33-year-old keeps losing to higher-ranked Chinese competitors despite making minor adjustments to his style. With his habit of getting off to slow starts, E. Lebesson is setting himself up for an uphill battle against Zhendong’s high-octane play.
For the Final Tally Zhendong will be a little rusty because he has not yet played a competitive match in Tokyo. The four-time winner of the men’s world cup is famous for his lightning-fast strokeplay. The effectiveness of the shakehand grip against E. Lebesson will be enormous.
Fan Zhendong hopes to take the opening two games against E. Lebesson in this close sport. He hopes to avoid a decisive seventh game in the series. This would provide the world’s best a huge advantage as the match goes, allowing him to gain momentum and eventually defeat his opponent.