Vladimir Samsonov

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Vladimir Samsonov
Uładzimir Samsonaŭ
Vladimir Samsonov 2013.jpg
Samsonov at the 2013 World Championships
Personal information
Full name Vladimir Viktorovich Samsonov; Uładzimir Viktaravich Samsonaŭ
Nickname(s) Vladi
Nationality  Belarus
Born (1976-04-17) April 17, 1976 (age 40)[1]
Minsk, Belarus[2]
Playing style Right-handed, shakehand grip
Equipment(s) Tibhar: blade – Samsonov Force Pro Black Edition, rubbers – Evolution MX-S
Highest ranking 1[3]
Current ranking 8 (December 2016)
Club Royal Villette Charleroi[2]
Height 189 cm (6 ft 2 in)[4]
Weight 83 kg (183 lb)

Vladimir Samsonov or Uładzimir Samsonaŭ (Belarusian: Уладзімір Віктаравіч Самсонаў, born April 17, 1976) is a Belarusian professional table tennis player, ranked 8th in the world as of December 2016.[5][1] He is known in China as the "Tai Chi Master" because of his superb all-around style, both offensive and defensive.[6] Samsonov competed at six consecutive Olympics between 1996 and 2016, placing fourth-fifth individually in 1996, 2000 and 2016.[2]


Samsonov is also known as Mr. ECL (European Champions League) for participating in the tournament for at least 15 years straight and because he currently holds nine ECL winner titles – three with Borussia, five with Charleroi, and two with Fakel Orenburg. He began his European club career when he joined Borussia Düsseldorf in 1994, then seven years later moved to Royal Charleroi in Belgium. In 2008 he moved to Spain to play for Cajagranada, but two years later he moved to the Russian superleague club Fakel Orenburg.

Samsonov is famous for being a top-10 player longer than anyone else in official ranking history save for the legend of table tennis Jan-Ove Waldner. He first joined the top-10 in 1996, then climbed to the top position in 1998. He stayed in the top-10 for 15 years until November 2011. He is ranked #8 as of November 2016.[5] He also currently holds the distinction of being the player with most ITTF ProTour titles (26).

Samsonov was awarded the Richard Bergmann Fair Play Trophy at the world championships a record three times, in 2003, 2007 and 2013.[7]

Personal life[edit]

Since the age of seven Samsonov is coached by Andrei Petkevich. Samsonov is married to Natasha, who was born in Yugoslavia and speaks Serbian, Croatian, Russian, English, German and French. They have two sons.[8]


  1. ^ a b "ITTF player's profile". International Table Tennis Federation. Retrieved 2010-08-15. 
  2. ^ a b c "Vladimir Samsonov". Sports Reference LLC. Retrieved 2010-08-18. 
  3. ^ "ITTF Museum". International Table Tennis Federation. Retrieved 2010-12-26. 
  4. ^ Vladimir Samsonov. rio2016.com
  5. ^ a b World ranking Record for SAMSONOV Vladimir (BLR). ittf.com
  6. ^ Vladimir Samsonov. nbcolympics.com
  7. ^ Award Winners. ittf.com
  8. ^ ЧЕЛОВЕК ГОДА. Самсонов — рыцарь справедливости. pressball.by (2005-12-30)