by Henry Chen
Chinese players Ma Long and Zhu Yuling were successful in last week’s proceedings in the Seamaster Qatar 2016 ITTF World Tour Grand Finals.
Ma Long was victorious in securing his fifth title in the competition following his convincing performance against Fan Zhendong. Meanwhile, Zhu Yuling imposed her authority over Han Ying of Germany in four games to nil.
Coincidentally, these two champions are also the star players of the leading teams in the Chinese Super League. They will only have several days to adjust as the Chinese Super League will resume its competition on Tuesday 13th and Wednesday 14th December for the Men’s and Women’s Divisions respectively.
In the Men’s Division, Shandong Weiqiao is already assured of a spot in the play-offs. They managed to remain unbeaten after 14 rounds in the competition. Ma Long is the lead player of Shandong Weiqiao.
Bayi and Shanghai look promising for the next stage of the competition. They are ranked second and third respectively. Meanwhile, Shandong Luneng is in an awkward position being tied with Bazhou in the fourth place.
With just four more rounds before the playoffs, Luneng and Bazhou definitely cannot just relax. They need to give their best in every remaining battle and hope that they will earn enough points to make into the top four.
As for the Women’s Division, Zhu Yuling’s Shandong Luneng is in the top spot. However, they don’t solely own the position. They share it with Anxin and Shandong Qilu. Advancing into the playoffs looks bright for these three teams.
Bayi and Beijing are the two teams which are still in a difficult position. They are tied in the fourth place with nine wins and five losses. Interestingly, they are scheduled to encounter each other this Wednesday, 14th December.
There are still four rounds in the preliminary stage before the competition will advance to the next one. The top four teams from each division will enter the playoffs. The ultimate winner will be hailed as this season’s champion.