15 May 2020

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DPR Korea pair strike upset (Rotterdam 2011)

Women’s Doubles: Round of 16

Seeded 13th for the women’s doubles event in Rotterdam, DPR Korea’s Kim Hye-Song and Kim Jong have outperformed expectations to move through to the quarter-finals.

Facing off against Japanese no.5 seeds Ai Fukuhara and Kasumi Ishikawa, Kim Hye-Song and Kim Jong displayed great togetherness to rise to the occasion (11-9, 12-10, 9-11, 8-11, 12-10, 11-4). Success for the DPR Korea duo, now Korea Republic’s Kim Kyung-Ah and Park Mi-Young await in the last eight.

Wang Hao and Ryu Seungmin play out thriller (Rotterdam 2011)

Men’s Singles: Round of 16

Reigning World champion vs 2004 Olympic gold medallist – expectations were sky-high heading into this match and it hasn’t disappointed with Wang Hao and Ryu Seungmin meeting face-to-face in a fantastic seven-game contest.

The early advantage in Ryu’s court, Wang did well to turn his early deficit into a 2-1 lead. However, back-to-back game wins for Ryu saw the match swing back into the Korean’s favour, needing just one further game to seal a dramatic victory. A fine outing in game six, Wang forces a decider and doesn’t look back as the top seeded entry just about squeezes over the finish line (10-12, 11-6, 11-8, 8-11, 7-11, 11-3, 11-6).

Feng Tianwei holds on (Rotterdam 2011)

Women’s Singles: Round of 16

That was a close one for Feng Tianwei! The no.6 seed from Singapore, who played a heroic role in Singapore’s World Championships title success one year back, faced a severe test in her last 16 fixture here in Rotterdam.

Requiring the full match distance, Feng narrowly holds off a brave fight from Tie Yana who deserves huge credit for her efforts (6-11, 11-4, 11-7, 11-9, 8-11, 6-11, 15-13).

Feng Tianwei holds her nerve (Photo: An Sungho)
Fan Ying is at it again! (Rotterdam 2011)

Women’s Singles: Round of 16

Responsible for Ai Fukuhara’s elimination in the previous round, no.22 seeded Chinese competitor Fan Ying has booked her spot in the last eight of the women’s singles draw in Rotterdam with victory over another higher-seeded Japanese opponent.

Taking on no.11 seed Sayaka Hirano, Fan fought back from a slow start to claim what was otherwise a one-way affair (3-11, 11-7, 11-4, 11-8, 11-4).

Lucjan Blaszczyk proceeds to quarter-finals (Tianjin 1995)

Men’s Singles: Round of 16

Well, well, well. Just when you thought the last 16 couldn’t get anymore dramatic! Gatien, Persson and Waldner are out and now we can add another former podium finisher in Ma Wenge to the list.

Bronze medallist at Chiba 1991, Ma would have been hoping for similar exploits in front of the home crowd here in Tianjin but it’s not to be for the Chinese player as Poland’s Lucjan Blaszczyk storms to a convincing 3-0 win (21-18, 21-15, 21-16).

Lucjan Blaszczyk powers into men’s singles quarters (Photo: Guido Schiefer)
Swedish stars also bid their farewells (Tianjin 1995)

Men’s Singles: Round of 16

Talk about the title race being blown wide open! Not only has defending champion Jean-Philippe Gatien exited in the Round of 16 but now we’ve lost the two previous gold medal winners as Sweden’s Jörgen Persson and Jan-Ove Waldner also suffered defeat.

1991 champion Persson held a 2-1 lead in his encounter against Ding Song but failed to capitalise as the Chinese defender mounted an impressive recovery (21-13, 18-21, 17-21, 25-23, 21-18). As for Dortmund 1989 gold medallist Waldner, he, like Gatien, was bested by a 19-year-old host nation representative as young Liu Guoliang secured a momentous victory (21-17, 22-20, 16-21, 17-21, 21-19).

World champion Jean-Philippe Gatien is out!!! (Tianjin 1995)

Men’s Singles: Round of 16

Crowned champion two years back at Gothenburg 1993, French icon Jean-Philippe Gatien won’t be standing on the medals podium here in Tianjin after falling in the Round of 16.

The man responsible for Gatien’s early departure is 19-year-old ace Kong Linghui from China, who produced a mighty performance to see off Gatien in a dramatic five-game encounter (21-18, 18-21, 21-10, 17-21, 21-8). What a result for the local fans to celebrate and what a huge confidence boost for the young man from China!

Jean-Philippe Gatien suffers early exit in Tianjin (Photo: Guido Schiefer)
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