The draw for the 2018 International Table Tennis Federation (ITTF) Team World Championships in the host city of Halmstad in Sweden has kept the men's home team in a different qualifying group from defending champions China.
With former Swedish table tennis players Jörgen Persson and Asa Carlsson in attendance, the top 24 men's and women's teams were drawn into four groups of six for the first stage of the biggest team table tennis event in the world, which will take place at the Halmstad Arena from April 29 to May 6.
The Swedish men's team were placed in the number one seeds Germany's group together with Hong Kong, Egypt, Romania and Slovenia.
Upon the conclusion of the draw ceremony, Swedish men's cach Ulf Carlsson said: "The draw looks good for Sweden, but no draw at a World Championships will be easy.
"It is good to avoid China, but then it is more likely we will play them in the second round, so it does not make much of a difference.
"I am looking forward to my team playing in front of a packed house in Halmstad to support us to win as many matches as possible."
China will be looking to repeat their success at the last edition of the World Team Table Tennis Championships in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia.
The top seeded Chinese women will take the lead in a Group A comprising of Singapore, Russia, India, Belarus and the host Swedish team, whereas the Chinese men's team were placed in Group B with Portugal, Brazil, Russia, Czech Republic and North Korea.
Fans will be in for another England v Japan epic clash early in the men's group stage in Halmstad.
The last two encounters between the two teams have both ended with Japan winning narrowly in dramatic fashion, at the 2016 World Team Table Tennis Championships, and at the recently concluded 2018 ITTF Team World Cup in London.
They will also play with Belgium, Belarus, Singapore and Chinese Taipei in Group C.
Group D features India, France, South Korea, Austria, Croatia and Poland.
Other women's groups see Japan, Austria, Hungary, Ukraine, Egypt and United States selected in Group B.
Group C features Chinese Taipei, Romania, The Netherlands, North Korea, Poland and Czech Republic.
In Group D, Hong Kong, South Korea, Germany, Thailand, Brazil and Luxembourg will lock horns.
The top finishing teams from the four groups progress directly to the quarter finals, with the second and third teams playing off to join them in the final eight.