by Ian Marshall, ITTF Publications Editor
Once again, as in the semi-final earlier in the day, Sun Yingsha appeared most comfortable on the main stage.
Considering that it was her first ever appearance on the ITTF World Tour, her one previous noteworthy international final being at the 2016 China Junior and Cadet Open, when losing to colleague Qian Tianyi, it was a quite remarkable performance.
The first two games were shared. both determined by the minimal two point margin; Sun Yingsha performed a brave recovery in the first game before maintaining a narrow lead in the second.
Chen Meng, deliberate on her service action won the third and fourth games; Sun Yingsha, keeping her composure secured the fifth game. Tension was mounting, in the sixth game Sun Yingsha went ahead 9-7, Chen Meng levelled at 9-all but the next two points went to Sung Yingsha, a seventh game beckoned.
At the change of ends in the decider, Sun Yingsha led 5-3, she extended the lead to 6-3, Chen Meng called “Time Out”. Sun Yingsha moved ahead 8-4, before at 10-7 she held three match points; the first match point was saved, not the second, Sun Yingsha had caused a sensation.
“I’m excited about winning this, especially having to come back from three-one down at the start. It have never crossed my mind that I could win both the Women’s Singles and Women’s Doubles gold here in Tokyo. I think because it’s my senior event, so I have no pressure or mental burden on myself. I was just playing my best for each & every match.” Sun Yingsha
It was for Chen Meng, her eighth ITTF World Tour Women’s Singles title, her second runners up spot; she was not able to repeat the feat of 2015 when she had won in Kobe, nor earlier this year when succeeding in Qatar.
Conversely, it was for Sun Yingsha success at the first attempt; sensational.