By Henry Chen
“I don’t have time to practice two times a day.” Shen Yanfei said.
The 36-year old player from Spain revealed during the opening day of the Seamaster 2016 Women’s World Cup that she will be having her final performance in Philadelphia, USA. She was teary-eyed in revealing her decision as table tennis has always been a big part in her existence.
In the opening day of the competition, Shen Yanfei successfully sealed her place in the main draw. She recorded one win and one loss in the qualifying stage. She swept Wu Yue and was defeated in 0-4 by Elizabeta Samara.
Her first opponent in the main draw was Petrissa Solja of Germany. It was tough for her in the beginning but as they went along in the match, she gained control. She scored 4-2 and sealed her place in the quarter-final.
Shen Yanfei then faced the veteran from Hong Kong, Tie Yana. This time, unlike in her previous match, she failed to maintain her control. She was suppressed and eventually lost the match in 1-4 (7-11, 11-5, 7-11, 5-11, 7-11).
Shen Yanfei then took her final bow, with no regrets.
“As my final performance, I feel that I have already performed well reaching the top eight in the competition. I gave my all so there are no regrets,” she said.
She also did not forget to acknowledge the level of her opponent. She said Tie Yana is one true outstanding player.
“Actually, me and Tie Yana are both from one generation of players. She is extremely good. Her level and condition are very good,” she added.
Shen Yanfei currently has a growing family. She personally takes care of her two children who are now 7 and 2 years old. As a hands-on mother, Shen would want to devote her time to her children especially now that both are going to school.
As she ends her career, Shen Yanfei is actually happy.
“Being able to perfect the Women’s World Cup makes me really happy,” Shen Yanfei concluded.