by Simon Daish
One of the standout encounters of the day comes in the Women’s Singles draw, as Japan’s teenage star Mima Ito goes head-to-head with the third seed Zhu Yuling in the Round of 16.
China’s Zhu Yuling hasn’t faced too much difficulty in the early stages of the competition and is considered as a major challenger for the title, but Mima Ito has shown on a number of occasions in the past that she has more than enough potential to take on the world’s best players so success shouldn’t be ruled out for the Japanese player.
Another major tie in the Women’s Singles competition sees DPR Korea’s Kim Song I attempt to outplay one of the strongest competitors on the planet, Liu Shiwen.
The Chinese representative made light work of the impressive talents of Suh Hyowon in the previous round, but can she put in a repeat performance against Rio 2016 bronze medallist Kim Song I in the Round of 16? Whatever the end result turns out to be, there will be a major casualty as elimination looms for one of these stars.
Fourth seed Zhang Jike continues on his journey to lift the Men’s Singles trophy at the World Championships for the third occasion, and has so far been fairly untroubled in the category.
However, day five of the event in Düsseldorf will present Zhang Jike with a tricky encounter against Korea Republic’s Lee Sangsu, and while the Chinese contestant will be the favourite to come through the match his 17th seeded opponent is more than likely set to provide an exciting fast-paced challenge which makes this a match definitely worth keeping an eye out for.
There is also a fascinating fixture in the lower half of the draw as 37-year-old Panagiotis Gionis takes on 41-year-old Vladimir Samsonov.
Both players are highly experienced on the big stage, and as many of you may know Vladimir Samsonov was the runner-up at the 1997 World Championships. Can the Greek representative Panagiotis Gionis frustrate his Belarusian rival with his superb control and defensive skills? Or will it be Vladimir Samsonov who comes out on top?
Arguably one of the most unpredictable encounters at the quarter-finals stage of the Women’s Doubles tournament comes right at the top of the draw as Feng Tianwei and Yu Mengyu of Singapore face off against Chinese Taipei’s Chen Szu-Yu and Cheng I-Ching. Both pairs have looked strong so far in Düsseldorf, but which partnership will prevail to seal a spot in the penultimate round? You may want to pay close attention to this battle.