by Henry Chen
Also prevalent in the Chinese line-up is Zhang Jike but he is the player against whom there is a question mark; injury forced him to withdraw from the Seamaster 2017 ITTF World Tour Qatar Open and the Marvellous 12 selection tournament for the Liebherr 2017 World Championships.
The London 2012 Olympic champion is currently recovering from a foot injury; Liu Guoliang, the Head Coach of the Chinese National Men’s Team, is hopeful that Zhang Jike will recover in time to compete in Wuxi.
It is anticipated that alongside Ma Long, Fan Zhendong and Zhang Jike, the names of Cui Qinglei, Lin Gaoyuan, Fang Bo and Zhou Yu will complete the Chinese selection.
Former Chinese Men’s Singles winners on duty in Wuxi; it is the same in the Women’s Singles event where Ding Ning, Liu Shiwen and Zhu Yuling are all in action. Ding Ning won in 2009, Liu Shiwen in 2013 and Zhu Yuling most recently in 2015.
Chen Meng, Wu Yang, Wang Manyu, Chen Ke and Chen Xingtong complete the Chinese Women’s Team.
A powerful squad but for the nearest challengers, Japan, there are two notable absentees; no doubt the Liebherr 2017 World Championships is very much in mind.
The names of Jun Mizutani and Kasumi Ishikawa do not appear on the entry list.
Kenta Matsudaira, Koki Niwa, Maharu Yoshimura, Yuya Oshima and Tomokazu Harimoto are the prominent names in the Japanese Men’s Team; Mima Ito and Miu Hirano will lead Women’s Team.
Under the auspices of the Asian Table Tennis Union, it will be the 23rd edition of the tournament.