by Ian Marshall, Editor
Currently listed in second position in the global order, as a result of wins against Japan’s Saki Shibata (11-3, 11-6, 7-11, 11-7, 11-5) and Chinese Taipei’s Cheng I-Ching (11-6, 11-7, 11-9, 11-1), Ding Ning replaces colleague Zhu Yuling at the top of the order and regains the coveted position last held in October 2016.
Crowned World champion in 2013 in Rotterdam, Ding Ning first assumed top spot in October 2014, she maintained that status until November 2015 when she dropped to no.3; just under one year later in October 2016, following her success at the Rio 2016 Olympic Games, she regained first place.
An absence from international play for some six months, she relinquished the top spot in November 2017, her name being significantly absent from the rankings. Later in the month she competed at the Seamaster 2017 ITTF World Tour Swedish Open in Stockholm; not fully fit she was beaten in the final by colleague Chen Xingtong but the appearance meant she returned the order of merit. She ended the year in the no.3 spot.
Changes to the ranking system, Ding Ning started January 2018 occupying the no.20 spot, by April she had climbed to no.11, six months later after winning on the Seamaster ITTF World Tour in Bulgaria and at the Uncle Pop Women’s World Cup in Chengdu, she was at no.2, one place behind Zhu Yuling.
Now she is back at the top of the list and one wonders will her name still be there in February 2020? On the two previous occasions when Ding Ning has occupied first place, it has always been for 13 consecutive publications.
Happy New Year.