Chinese stars cruise on at table tennis worlds

Source:Xinhua Published: 2015-4-30 12:43:21

Men's singles world number one Ma Long from China was not really troubled in beating Frenchman Emmanuel Lebesson in five games in the second round of the World Table Tennis Championships on Wednesday.

Ma's compatriot and defending champion Zhang Jike won 4-0 against Seo Hyundeok of South Korea and now plays another Chinese Liang Jingkun in the most exciting match in the next round.

"I'm satisfied with my performance and I have used my coach's tactics well. My opponent defeated me once in 2011 so I was well prepared this time in tactics. I studied his routine, played accordingly and it worked," said Zhang after the match.

"I mainly focused on myself. After all I'm better than him."

China's Fan Zhendong, Xu Xin, and Fang Bo also advanced into the third round.

The main upset in men's singles came from sixth seeded German No. 1 Dimitrij Ovtcharov, who was defeated by Lee Sangsu of South Korea.

Ovtcharov said: "He played very strongly from both sides. If I knew that he would start so well, maybe I would take more risks in the beginning, but he surprised me a little bit with that."

In women's singles, China's world number one Ding Ning eased past Poland's Natalia Partyka for the third round.

Partyka, born without a right hand and forearm, participates in competitions for able-bodied athletes as well as in competitions for athletes with disabilities.

"I've played against her at the end of 2012 or at the beginning of 2013. When I first met with her, I was not feeling at ease. But now, I will not focus on her body, but on remembering the strategy and her changes," Ding said after the comfortable 4-0 win.

Ding's compatriot Wu Yang beat Barbora Balazova of Slovakia 4-0 to also move on. She looks likely to reach the quarterfinals, where she will have to beat Ding if she wants to achieve her best world championships result - she was knocked out from singles quarterfinals in both 2011 and 2013.

Japanese Ai Fukuhara made a shock second round exit from the women's singles.

Hugely popular in China, the world No. 8 ranked Japanese had been cheered on by Chinese spectators throughout her 4-2 loss to Ukraine's Tetyana Bilenko.

Japan's woes were compounded by the loss of world No. 13 Sayaka Hirano to unseeded Hana Matelova from the Czech Republic in seven games.

There were victories for Chinese players Liu Shiwen, Mu Zi, Li Xiaoxia and Zhu Yuling, Japan's fifth seed Kasumi Ishikawa and Singapore's world No. 4 Feng Tianwei.

In women's doubles round of 16, fifth seeds Polish duo Katarzyna Grzybowska/Natalia Partyka and sixth seeds Doo Hoi Kem and Lee Ho Ching of Chinese Hongkong both crashed out.

Top seeds Fukuhara and Misako Wakamiya were too good for Kristin Silbereisen/Sabine Winter of Germany. The Japanese pair's victory means they have scheduled a great match with Chinese pair Ding/Li in the next round.

In men's doubles round of 16, Fan and his partner Zhou Yu had the biggest win of their young partnership, beating the world No. 3 team Tang Peng and Wong Chun Ting from Hongkong, China.

Heavy favorites Xu and Zhang also reached the quarterfinals.

In mixed doubles, Xu partnered South Korean Yang Haeun to beat Steffen Mengel/Petrissa Solja of Germany 4-0 for a last four berth.

Posted in: Eye on the ball

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