“2017 was my first year since 2003 where I didn’t get a medal from a championship. I was extremely disappointed but I also know that, after my huge success in Rio, the year after would always be very challenging"
Denmark’s Peter Rosenmeier is aiming to bounce back from a disappointing 2017 by winning his first Para table tennis world title since 2010 this October in Lasko-Celje, Slovenia.
After the shock of crashing out in the 2017 European Championships quarter finals, 2018 has been a rebuilding process for the Rio 2016 Paralympic singles class 6 champion.
When the World Championships open on 15 October, the former world number one believes the competition will be fierce and not just a battle between him and his Thai rival Rungroj Thainiyom.
“For the first time in my career I think that I can lose to all the qualified players,” said Rosenmeier.
“At previous Championships there have always been three or four players that I didn’t think that I could lose to – but not this time, and that shows how much the level has increased in the sport during the last couple of years. It will definitely be the hardest Championships ever.
“Most of the time (me and Thainiyom) have some great matches. The play in class 6 can easily be very tactical where the focus is to destroy your opponent’s play. But both Rungroj and I love to play aggressive and it makes our games more viewer-friendly than most other games in class 6. It’s definitely more fun to play.”
The road back to the top has certainly been encouraging for Rosenmeier who is now ranked second in the world. He won May’s Slovenian Open, beating Thainiyom - the 2012 Paralympic champion - along the way.
“2017 was my first year since 2003 where I didn’t get a medal from a championship. I was extremely disappointed but I also know that, after my huge success in Rio, the year after would always be very challenging,” explained Rosenmeier.
“I have worked hard with my psychologist to bounce back and was happy to see that I still have the level in Slovenia.”
When not competing, the four-time Paralympian is still involved in the sport. As the full-time finance manager at Denmark’s National Para Table Tennis Centre in Brondby, he has “as little waste time as possible” between training and work.
He is committed to advancing Para table tennis in his home country, becoming one of the founders of Parasport Denmark’s ‘How hard can it be?’ campaign in 2015.
“The campaign was a big chance that we took, allocating a lot of money and resources to a totally new project where we had no idea what to expect,” said Rosenmeier.
“I’m very proud of the fact that we did it and of the look and impact that the campaign made. We still have a huge task in Denmark to get people with a disability to do sports, but the campaign was a first and very important step.”