Tournaments

16 Dec 2017

Success for Chen Meng, the top seed at the semi-final stage of the Women’s Singles event at the Seamaster 2017 ITTF World Tour Grand Finals in Astana Kazakhstan on the evening of Saturday 16th December not only meant a place in the final of the prestigious annual event, there was a further most significant effect.

The win meant that when the Women’s World Rankings for January 2018 are announced, Chen Meng will head the list. She replaces colleague and doubles partners Zhu Yuling who earlier this year superceded Ding Ning, the Rio 2016 Olympic Games gold medallist and reigning World champion.

by Ian Marshall, ITTF Publications Editor

In the Kazakhstan capital city Chen Meng beat compatriot, Gu Yuting the no.5 seed, in four straight games (12-10, 11-4, 11-5, 11-9) to reserve her place in the title deciding contest; arguably the first game being the critical stage of the match.

Gu Yuting, causing Chen Meng problems with her variety of services and then following with a long, smooth top spin stroke established a 9-5 and 10-8 lead; Chen Meng promptly won the next four points and from that moment seized the initiative.

“I think this match did not seem exciting, because we are teammates so we know each other very well. We know more about how to restrict each other’s play so there aren’t many rallies in the match. Of course I’m very happy to be able to be top of the world ranking. I actually had no idea about it prior to the match. I will continue to work hard in future competitions and play well in every event.” Chen Meng

Serving from the centre of the table to reduce the effectiveness of Gu Yuting gaining an angle wide to her forehand, Chen Meng secured the second and third games before establishing a 5-3 lead in the fourth. Gu Yuting called “Time Out”. Adopting a wide variety of services, she levelled matters at 6-all and at 9-all but was never able to establish a meaningful lead.

At 10-9, Chen Meng held match point, she duly converted; a place in the final was reserved.

 

World Ranking 2017 Seamaster ITTF World Tour Grand Finals 2017 Seamaster Grand Finals Chen Meng
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Day 4 - Seamaster 2017 ITTF World Tour Grand Finals