By Henry Chen
The 2016 Liebherr Men’s World Cup is already set on the 1st of October in Saarbrücken Germany. However, the playing lineup of the tournament still has some changes.
The latest update in the list of players is that the Japanese top player Jun Mizutani has pulled out from the competition.
According to the Japanese Table Tennis Association, a busy schedule plays a vital role in such decision.
Jun Mizutani was very successful in the Rio Olympic Games. He won the bronze in the Olympic Men’s Singles and it was the first medal for the Japanese Table Tennis Team in such event. He also defeated the Chinese player Xu Xin in the Olympic Men’s Team final.
Therefore, Jun Miztuani returned as a hero in Japan. His achievement was big and that gained him a lot of attention since he came back from Rio.
In effect, the Japanese main player has been busy with activities and hasn’t been able to take enough time for training. It unfortunately affected his playing condition for the upcoming Men’s World Cup.
The Japanese association wishes to extend their regret for such inconvenience.
Filling up the vacant slot is the 19-year old player from China, Fan Zhendong. This is already his second attendance in such tournament following last year in Halmstad, Sweden.
As a first-timer, Fan Zhendong proved to be a very reliable player in Sweden. He surpassed every round successfully and reached the finals where he met his compatriot Ma Long. But in the final match, the young player was swept in four games.
This time, another precious opportunity is given to Fan Zhendong. This attendance in the World Cup is a perfect chance for him to prove his capacity to the coaching staff of the Chinese Team. If he will do well, this could probably be his first ever world title in his career, solidifying his chance for the Tokyo Olympic Games.