by Ian Marshall, ITTF Publications Editor
In 2015 they had beaten colleagues Liu Dingshuo and Zhu Cheng in the final, in the Italian resort, the top seeds, they overcame the Korean combination of An Jaehyun and Baek Hogyun, the no.8 seeds, in the title deciding contest (10-12, 11-8, 11-5, 11-5, 11-5).
“It was my last match of the tournament; facing the Koreans, so I was playing more actively. Our strategies were also carried out smoothly and our opponents didn’t give us too much pressure in the match. The opening game was tough; we lost that despite having an initial lead in the game. We believed that our tactics would work so we remained firm in implementing our strategies and didn’t change just because they took the first game.” Wang Chuqin
The win came after Xue Fei had partnered Wang Manyu to gold in the Mixed Doubles event; again the top seeds, they accounted for An Jaehyun and Baek Hogyun in the final (11-8, 11-5, 14-12, 8-11, 11-8).
Two silver medals for An Jaehyun and no repeat of one year earlier in Cape Town; on that occasion. Cho Seungmin had partnered An Jaehyun to Boys’ Doubles success and Kim Jiho to Mixed Doubles gold.
“We did face some difficulties, especially in the third game but I tried to take the active role in the match and we tried to think of solutions to resolve the problems we faced on court. We watched their match footages prior to the final and prepared well for the match, so we were able to take good control of the game most of the time.” Xue Fei
Success for Wang Manyu in the Mixed Doubles event, in the Girls’ Doubles the outcome was to be the silver medal.
In a final that ebbed and flowed, Qian Tianyi and Wang Manyu, the no.2 seeds, experienced defeat at the hands of colleagues Shi Xunyao and Sun Yingsha, the top seeds; a full distance seven games contest (7-11, 14-12, 11-4, 8-11, 10-12, 11-7, 11-9).
“It’s my first World Junior Championships Girls’ Doubles title, so I’m really happy that we could win. At the start we weren’t executing our planned tactics thoroughly, after the “Time Out” in the sixth fame when losing 4-1, we were more firm in carrying out our strategies, We fought back point by point.” Shi Xunyao
A major turning point of the contest came as early as the second game when after winning the first, Qian Tianyi and Wang Manyu led 10-4 only lose 12-10; one wonders had that outcome been different would the final result also have been different?