Born: 1966-04-22 (51 years old)
International matches: 242 (1983-2012)
Five-time world champion, in singles 1991, teams 1989, 1991, 1993 and 2000; ten-time European champion in singles, team and doubles; winner of the Men’s world cup in 1991; winner of Europe Top 12; winner of the Swedish Open in 1996; 20-time Swedish champion in team, singles, doubles and mixed doubles.
Has almost won it all
Jörgen Persson is, alongside Jan-Ove Waldner, the one who remains the most respected player. This is no small part due to the length of his career. In China, he is referred to as Lao Pe, “Old Persson”.
Jörgen Persson is part of an exclusive club of athletes who have participated in seven Olympic games. Apart from Jörgen, this club includes skeet shooter Ragnar Skanåker and fencer Kerstin Palm.
Unfortunately, Jörgen Persson never managed to top off his career with an Olympic medal, but he made it to the semifinals twice, losing the bronze medal match on both occasions.
Perhaps he lost due to kindness. He has received Fair Play-awards in a number of contexts, which is of course one of the reason that Jörgen is so highly regarded by his competitors. During his career, which spanned almost three decades, Jörgen played a total of 242 matches representing Sweden. He participated in a total of 17 world championships and twelve European championships.
His medal record includes five gold medals in the world championships, and ten gold medals in the European championships. He also has a total of 20 Swedish championship titles, five of which were won in teams, five in singles, nine in doubles and one in mixed doubles.
You could continue for a while, but we’ll close off with the award that was presented to Jörgen by the municipality of Halmstad, his home town, who put up his picture at their own Hall of Fame. Here he can be seen alongside handball player Bengt “Böna” Hansson.