by Simon Daish
Hong Kong’s Wong Chun Ting had never previously got the better of Xu Xin (China) on the World Tour, and defeats to the Chinese player at the 2016 LAOX Japan Open and the 2016 Korea Open quarter-final stages didn’t boost Wong’s chances of success at the China Open.
The scene looked set for another last four appearance for Xu Xin, but much to his horror the only action awaiting Xu is the Men’s Doubles event after Wong claimed a stunning Men’s Singles win.
Victory in game one after deuce put Wong Chun Ting ahead, but two consecutive ends for Xu Xin reversed the advantage to 1-2. Wong brought the tie level following a positive third game, only for Xu to regain the lead with a win in the fifth end.
Just one more game was required for Xu Xin’s progress, however, it never appeared as Wong Chun Ting summoned up all of his talent to steal the win and dampen the mood of the Chinese home spectators (13-11, 3-11, 6-11, 11-7, 5-11, 11-7, 11-4).
“I’m happy, I’m so excited. I have never taken more than one game off Xu Xin in the past so I’m excited. This is the first Open for me after the Olympic Games. I feel that at the Olympic Games Xu Xin played at the highest level, but maybe there is less motivation here so I caught him when he wasn’t playing quite as well. Xu Xin today was not playing at his real level, in the last two games Xu Xin made more mistake than me” – Wong Chun Ting (Hong Kong).
Saturday 17th September: Men’s Singles – Main Draw