05 Jul 2019

Follow along as we track all the action on day two, Friday 5th July, at the Seamaster 2019 ITTF World Tour SHINHAN Korea Open in Busan.

Liang Jingkun stays the course

Men’s singles: Round Two (Round  of 16)

No.5 seed Liang Jingkun has been put through his paces in the closing contest of the day with Korean opponent Cho Seungmin putting up a mighty effort.

Very little separated the two competitors and with the home crowd in his court Cho Seungmin started to dream of a huge upset, but in the end it was Liang Jingkun who held the upper hand across six games to advance to the next round (8-11, 18-16, 11-8, 16-18, 15-13, 11-7).

Simply outstanding

Men’s singles: Round Two (Round  of 16)

World no.1 Xu Xin has breezed through his second round encounter against Quadri Aruna with the penhold specialist producing a performance of sheer class to beat his Nigerian counterpart 4-1 (11-3, 8-11, 11-5, 11-2, 11-5). Next up for Xu Xin is a meeting with either fellow countryman Liang Jingkun and or the host nation’s Cho Seungmin.

Xu Xin looking unstoppable in Busan (Photo An Sungho)
So close but not to be for Lim Jonghoon

Men’s singles: Round Two (Round  of 16)

Wow! What a match we’ve just witnessed on table no.1 with the host nation’s Lim Jonghoon giving three-time World champion Ma Long a run for his money.

Trailing 2-0 and then 3-1 in games but Lim Jonghoon refused to give up the fight, earning back-to-back game wins to level the scores at 3-3. In the final game Ma Long was forced to recover from a slow start before saving one match point opportunity on his way to a dramatic 14-12 win in the decider (11-5, 11-9, 7-11, 11-5, 8-11, 9-11, 14-12).

Quadri Aruna is FIRED UP!

Nigerian star Quadri Aruna is just moments away from taking on World no.1 Xu Xin.

Brave effort but Wong Chun Ting misses out

Men’s singles: Round Two (Round  of 16)

Giving it his all in an epic clash, Wong Chun Ting has narrowly missed out on a spot in the last eight of the men’s singles event.

Claiming the first and third games in emphatic style the Hong Kong player twice held the advantage against no.3 seed Tomokazu Harimoto. However, despite his best efforts it wasn’t enough as Harimoto edged over the finish line in six games (7-11, 11-4, 5-11, 15-13, 11-6, 16-14).

End of the road for Wong Chun Ting (Photo An Sungho)
World champion falls!

Women’s singles: Round Two (Round  of 16)

Liu Shiwen is out of the women’s singles race after losing out to Sun Yingsha in an all-China round two meeting.

Suffering defeat at the hands of the teenager in Sapporo only a couple of weeks back and the same outcome has transpired in Busan with Sun Yingsha prevailing 4-2 over the World champion (11-9, 10-12, 11-9, 11-7, 9-11, 11-6). Sun will take on no.6 seed Kasumi Ishikawa in the quarter-finals.

Second seed survives scare

Women’s singles: Round Two (Round  of 16)

Following a tense battle against Japan’s Miu Hirano, second seed Chen Meng has sealed her spot in the next round of the women’s singles draw.

Leading by a three-game advantage but Chen Meng’s lead was soon cut down to just one as Miu Hirano staged a comeback. Ninth seed Hirano then looked set to take the tie into a deciding seventh game but fell short as Chen recovered from 4-7 to win game six and with it the match (11-5, 11-3, 11-7, 7-11, 4-11, 11-8).

Mima Ito sails through

Women’s singles: Round Two (Round  of 16)

Mima Ito has reserved her spot in the women’s singles quarter-finals following a thunderous display against fellow Japanese compatriot Hitomi Sato (11-8, 11-6, 11-5, 11-6). Round two success for Mima Ito, the no.7 seed faces Wang Manyu in the last eight.

Over on table no.1 China’s Zhu Yuling was simply too strong for her round of 16 opponent, prevailing over Hong Kong’s Doo Hoi Kem in straight games (11-4, 11-4, 11-7, 11-3).

Double(s) final for China-Korea

Men’s doubles: Semi-finals

Despite Japan’s Yoshimura Maharu and Morizono Masataka’s best efforts, it will be two China-Korea doubles’ finals in the 2019 Shinhan Korea Open tomorrow.

Xu Xin and Fan Zhendong had to wade through a starting stumble after losing 14-12 in the first game to the Japanese. With every game an average of 11 minutes long, Yoshimura and Morizono had no plans of giving up the chase. Nonetheless, Xu and Fan held them off with a stunningly calm display in a 3:1 win (12-14, 11-9, 14-12, 11-6). They will now face off against Jeoung Youngsik and Lee Sangsu in the final tomorrow.

Calm, composed and into the final: China’s Xu Xin and Fan Zhendong.
Chinese elite battle it out for the finals

Women’s doubles: Semi-finals

In probably the most high quality match of the tournament, Chen Meng and Wang Manyu’s pairing came out on top against Ding Ning and Liu Shiwen. After an engaging encounter which left fans wanting for more, Chen and Wang took to the final by winning 3:2 (14-16, 11-8, 11-6, 9-11, 12-10).

For the all-Korean semi-final, Jeon Jihee and Lee Zion bowed out after some intricate teamwork between Choi Hyojoo and Yang Haeun. The former pair started well, winning the first game 11-7, but could not keep up when Choi and Yang turned up the heat (7-11, 11-9, 11-8, 11-7). Fair to say, the China-Korea final will be one to behold.

Proving to be best of the best: Chen Meng and Wang Manyu are back in the final!
Disappointing end for Woojin

Men’s doubles: Semi-finals

In a sad turn of events, home favourite and defending champion Jang Woojin withdrew from the 2019 Shinhan Korea Open due to a toe injury. The final will now be contested between Koreans Lee Sangsu and Jeoung Youngsik versus winners from China’s Xu Xin and Fan Zhendong’s match against Japan’s Maharu Yoshimura and Masataka Morizono.

Wong-Doo pair setup intense final

Mixed doubles: Semi-finals

In an all-Hong Kong semi-final, Wong Chun Ting and Doo Hoi Kem clinically saw off the pairing of Ho Kwan Kit and Lee Ho Ching in just under 23 minutes (11-8, 11-9, 11-7). This means they will face off for the 2019 Shinhan Korea Open mixed doubles championship versus the Chinese elite Xu Xin and Liu Shiwen.

Xu and Liu had to navigate tougher waters in the face of Japan’s Mama Ito and Jun Mizutani. Dropping the first game 8-11, it was an even match on all accounts with neither pairing letting up on the service. Finally, the Chinese prevailed in four games and sent the top seeds into the final (8-11, 11-4, 13-11, 11-8).

Jeon lives to fight another day

Women’s singles: Round of 16

In an intense battle, last remaining Korean in the women’s singles, Jeon Jihee had to dig deep for securing her place in the quarterfinals. Up against Cheng I-Ching of Chinese Taipei, the home favourite dropped a game 6-11 to have her fans slightly worried.

It all ended well with a straightforward 4:1 win for Jihee, meaning her next hurdle will be the Chinese Ding Ning.

“I’m coming through a tough period of injury and not winning, but I feel like I’m getting stronger and stronger now. It’s a pleasing victory. I now face Ding Ning for the first time in over three years. It will be a good challenge.”

The world #3 mirrored her next opponent in a 4:1 victory over Feng Tianwei of Singapore, winning the last three games in imperious fashion (11-4, 9-11, 11-4, 11-9, 11-5).

Playing on home turf, Jeon Jihee leads the hopes of a nation.
A Swedish swordfight

Men’s singles: Round of 16

Heading into today’s match with his best friend Mattias Falck, Kristian Karlsson couldn’t offer a prediction. “It’s always special to play against him,” Karlsson commented instead. “I know he feels the same way, so we’ll see what we can give the audience tomorrow.”

What they gave the audience was a thrill, seesawing during the first four games before Karlsson got the upper hand, taking the last three to avenge his defeat at Falck’s hands at last year’s Swedish Open. The 4-2 victory (7-11, 13-11, 10-12, 11-7, 11-9, 11-8) moves the 27-year-old into the quarter-final, already his best result this year in ITTF World Tour play.

It was close, but Kristian Karlsson came out on top against Mattias Falck.
Jeong ejects Jang!

Men’s singles: Round of 16

There will be no men’s singles title this year for Jang Woojin, whose exit came at the hands of teammate Jeoung Youngsik. After taking it to the limit in his first match against Russia’s Kirill Skachkov yesterday, where the 27-year-old sealed Jeoung his win with a 19-17 fifth game, Jeoung had less trouble eliminating Jang, who went in four relatively quiet games (11-8, 12-10, 11-4, 11-4). Jeoung’s reward: facing the formidable Fan Zhendong in the men’s quarter-final.

I don’t feel really happy because this win came against my teammate, and he also had a foot injury,” Jeong said afterward. “My next match is against Fan Zhendong. He’s one of the top players, so I’m really quite excited about this challenge.”

Fan on a roll

Men’s singles: Round of 16

It seems that Fan Zhendong, who ceded his world #1 place to countryman Xu Xin this past week, would like it back. The 22-year-old from Guangzhou was on fire against Spain’s Alvaro Robles, taking a mere 21 minutes to capture four games (11-2, 11-9, 11-6, 11-9). Also advancing is 2018 Youth Olympic champion Wang Chuqin, who beat Portugal’s Marcos Freitas 4-1 (11-2, 11-6, 11-5, 12-10, 11-5).

Fan Zhendong is moving on.
Filling in the finals picture

Women’s doubles: Quarter-finals

It’ll be China vs. Korea in the women’s doubles final, but which Chinese pair and which Korean pair? Jeon Jihee and Lee Zion are in after a 3-1 ousting of Japan’s Honami Nakamori and Satsuki Odo (11-9, 11-6, 8-11, 11-4), while Choi Hyojoo and Yang Haeun defeated Slovakia’s Barbora Balazova and the Czech Republic’s Hana Matelova in their own 3-1 result (11-8, 8-11, 11-7, 11-3).

That brings the two Korean pairs together to contend for the right to face the winner of the Chen/Wang vs. Ding/Liu showdown in just a bit. Pass the popcorn, this is going to be good.

A surging Jeon Jihee.
Chinese charge toward semis

Women’s doubles: Quarter-finals

Maybe the Chinese women wanted to show how efficiently they could take care of their quarter-finals, or maybe they just wanted to go to lunch early. In any case, new pair Chen Meng and Wang Manyu wasted no time taking down Japan’s Miu Hirano and Saki Shibata 3-0 (12-10, 11-5, 11-8). Ditto Ding Ning and Liu Shiwen, who dispatched Singapore’s Yu Mengyu and Zeng Jian, also 3-0 (11-3, 11-5, 11-9) setting up a Chinese clash in the semis.

Ding Ning and Liu Shiwen are singles rivals, but best of friends when united in doubles.
Japan vs. China for a place in the final

Men’s doubles: Quarter-finals

Masataka Morizono and Maharu Yoshimura’s battle against Germany’s Benedikt Duda and Qiu Dang was interesting for how it looked like Xu Xin and Fan Zhendong’s set against Ho Kwan Kit and Wong Chun Ting on the next table over. Both the Chinese and the Japanese dropped the first game in their quarterfinals, then rallied to win the next three. In the Japan-Germany matchup, it played out 8-11, 12-10, 11-9, 11-5, with both the semi-final advancers taking some time to warm up. A sign of things to come as Morizono and Yoshimura get set to take on Xu and Fan?

Masataka Morizono’s come-hither stare.
Xu and Fan on top again

Men’s doubles: Quarter-finals

Xu Xin and Fan Zhendong began their day with a loss in the first game against Ho Kwan Kit and Wong Chun Ting, but the Hong Kong pair’s success ended there: The Cloudwalker, recently elevated to world #1 in men’s singles, and Fan, the man who held that spot for 15 months before ceding it to Xu, quickly clamped down. Result: the Chinese took the next three games to solidify their place in the semifinal. Margin of victory: 3-1 (9-11, 11-9, 11-6, 11-4).

Can’t keep ’em down: Xu Xin and Fan Zhendong.
A semi-celebration for Korea

Men’s doubles: Quarter-finals

Korea has found its first semifinalists in men’s pair Jang Woojin and Lim Jonghoon. This tournament will always be special for Jang, who last year in Daejeon became the first player ever to capture the triple crown of table tennis, taking the titles in men’s singles, men’s doubles and mixed doubles. It was one of the things that earned a nod of commendation from no less than Korean President Moon Jae-In.

Jang and Lim are back and into the semis after answering the Swedish challenge set by Kristian Karlsson and Anton Källberg, which resulted in a 3-1 Korean victory (11-7, 11-9, 12-10). Minutes later, compatriots Jeoung Youngsik and Lee Sangsu also broke through, holding off Japan’s rising star/experienced veteran pair Tomokazu Harimoto and Koki Niwa 3-1 (11-4, 7-11, 11-8, 11-7) to advance and setting up an all-Korea semi, guaranteeing the host nation a berth to the final. Here’s what Jeong and Lee had to say after:

“We knew our opponents’ weaknesses and managed to exploit them. The crowd were so loud and made it very exciting for us during the match. We will now prepare for our next match. We want to play the most attacking game possible, because we know that’s the way to win.”

Wong and Doo complete MXD semis field

Mixed doubles: Quarter-finals

It’ll be an all-Hong Kong semi-final in mixed doubles in Busan as Wong Chun Ting and Doo Hoi Kem face off against Ho Kwan Kit and Lee Ho Ching for the honor of doing battle with either Xu Xin and Liu Shiwen or Jun Mizutani and Mima Ito in the final.

Wong and Doo overpowered Slovakia’s Lubomir Pistej and Barbora Balazova in four, cruising to a two-game lead before a little concentration blip caused a loss in the third. They remained solid and focused in the last to close out the 3-1 victory (11-6, 11-7, 5-11, 11-7).

Wong Chun Ting and Doo Hoi Kem will face a familiar pair in the semis.
Ho-Lee moly!

Mixed doubles: Quarter-finals

Adam Szudi and Szandra Pergel’s upset streak came to an end against Hong Kong’s Ho Kwan Kit and Lee Ho Ching, who proved too much for the standout Hungarian pair today, beating them 3-0 (11-6, 11-6, 11-9) to take their place among the four duos still remaining.

The bright side for Szudi and Pergel is that they head home with the satisfaction of having avenged themselves on Maharu Yoshimura and Kasumi Ishikawa, who knocked them out of contention at April’s World Championships in Budapest.

Ho Kwan Kit and Lee Ho Ching cruise into the semifinal.
Mizutani and Ito are living the dream

Mixed doubles: Quarter-finals

Things are working out for Jun Mizutani and Mima Ito. Yesterday, the newly matched pair edged ITTF World Tour leaders Lin Yun-Ju and Cheng I-Ching. Today they sent France’s Tristan Flore and Laura Gasiner packing, surviving an early dropped game and a nailbiter of a fourth game to clinch a 3-1 win (8-11, 11-5, 11-7, 14-12). But the biggest test of this promising early partnership will come when they see Xu Xin and Liu Shiwen in the semi-final.

Mizutani and Ito: tough test ahead for the new pair.
Xu and Liu, as expected

Mixed doubles: Quarter-finals

Xu Xin and Liu Shiwen aren’t giving an inch — which is exactly what you’d expect from a pair that have already won twice on the World Tour this year. Xu and Liu are back together after Xu played (and dominated) with Zhu Yuling at the Japan Open in Sapporo two weeks ago. Here against Korea’s Lim Jonghoon and Yoo Eunchong it was another up-and-down story — 3-0 (11-5, 11-5, 11-2) — and onto the semis.

Liu Shiwen and Xu Xin aced their quarter-final.
Day Two begins!

It’s on: The second day of main draw action at the Seamaster 2019 ITTF World Tour SHINHAN Korea Open is underway! Here’s what’s on the schedule for today:

World Tour 2019 Seamaster SHINHAN Korea Open ITTF World Tour Busan 2019 Korea Open

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Seamaster 2019 ITTF World Tour SHINHAN Korea Open - Day 2