By Henry Chen
For the first time in the history of the competition, no player from the Chinese Team will participate in the Seamaster 2016 Women’s World Cup. Both Ding Ning and Liu Shiwen withdrew from the competition.
Thus it definitely means that this year’s tournament will give opportunities for other contenders to win the valued title.
Upon knowing the news about Liu Shiwen’s retirement, Japanese contenders have increased confidence in the upcoming competition.
“Originally, the goal that I set to myself is to win a medal. Today, I just knew that Chinese players will not participate. I will increase my goal,” Miu Hirano said.
“I hope to reach the finals and secure the championship title of this World Cup,” Mima Ito added.
Mima Ito ranks third in the seeding list while Miu Hirano is in the fifth spot. Japanese media believes that in this year’s competition, Japan might just achieve an even better result than last year. Kasumi Ishikawa won the silver in the 2015 Women’s World cup held in Sendai, Japan.
Second seed in the competition is Cheng I-Ching from Chinese Taipei. She is the substitute of Liu Shiwen. Compared to the Japanese players, Cheng hasn’t thought about winning that much.
“Although there are no Chinese players participating, I still haven’t thought about winning the title. After all, there are a lot of good players. I just want to play each match well. Of course, I will work hard to fight,” Cheng I-Ching said.
After the Chinese players withdrew from the tournament, Feng Tianwei became the strongest contender for the title. She is now the top seed in the competition. Despite this, the Singaporean remains to be low-key.
She said that she is just aiming to reach the semi-final. Last year, Feng Tianwei was eliminated in the round 16 after she was defeated by the German Petrissa Solja in four straight games.
This year’s Seamaster 2016 Women’s World Cup is a perfect opportunity for her to redeem herself and finally win her first ever such title. Feng Tianwei’s highest achievement in the competition is a bronze in 2008 and 2013.