"She played unbelievable today and she was everywhere and she hit all the balls in a very strong, very powerful way," the world No.2 said after the match. "It was a little bit cold and I couldn't be at my best."
"That's our aim and I'm confident we can compete with the footballers we have," he added, despite the refusal of several clubs to release their players for national duties.
Baum's start wasn't what you would call success, as all things seemed to go wrong. An own-goal and injuries against Leipzig seem to have robbed the team of its last remaining bit of confidence.
"The quality of our defense slumped in the second quarter, and they pulled away from the match. We can be better than this," Fujian coach Gong Songlin commented. Enditem
The visitor from Spisska Nova Ves was leading by 13 points at half-time which ultimately proved decisive, but the home team managed to fight the deficit and almost brought the game to a thrilling end despite having only five available players in the second half due to injuries and fouls. Enditem
Jiangsu showed its well-balanced, attacking firepower, with seven players scoring in double figures, led by Sun Li's 18.
"The tiebreak was very tense. The tiebreak was where all the money was," said Tsitsipas on court. "I am glad that I played good tennis and I didn't panic. I stayed concentrated, stayed low-key and tried to take it point by point."
Moussa Djenepo scored his first home goal for Southampton in the 41st minute and Oriol Romeu smacked home a sensational volley with just over 20 minutes remaining as the Saints kept their second clean sheet in two games.
With the support of the Chinese Table Tennis Association (CTTA), international table tennis action is back after several months of activity suspension due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
The second set was filled with breaks as both players failed to hold their serves from the sixth to the 11th game. Zhang served to win in the 10th game but was broken by her French opponent. However, when the chance appeared again on the 12th, Zhang didn't miss it and wrapped up the victory with a flawless love game.
Shanxi led 24-16 in the first quarter, seeing Hebei trail by five points before the half break.