The men and women’s singles quarter-finals of the 2020 China Table Tennis Championships saw some interesting results with the cream of the Chinese table tennis showcasing their talent.
In the men’s singles, Fan Zhendong saw off the challenge of Zhao Zihao in straight games while Liang Jingkun defeated Lin Gaoyuan 4-2. The two will now face each other in the semifinals.
Liang Jingkun’s victory came after he called a medical timeout in the fifth game against Lin Gaoyuan. The Chinese star gave a positive update after the match concluded:
“The knee was a little uncomfortable at the time, so I asked the team doctor to help me deal with it. Today I was very prepared. Full of energy, Lin Gaoyuan also played very well – either of us could have won in this match. For tomorrow’s semi-final against Fan Zhendong – who is a very powerful player – I need to be prepared for difficulties.” Liang Jingkun
In the other two quarter-finals, the biggest surprise came when Wang Chuqin managed to beat Xu Xin 4-1 and book his place in the semi-final against his idol and Beijing teammate, Ma Long who did not drop a game against Zhang Yudong.
Meanwhile for the men’s doubles event, Ma Te and Hou Yingchao’s double-chopping coordination proved to be the most decisive. Hou Yingchao, men’s singles winner at the National Championships last year, has truly been the story of the tournament as the 40-year-old who reached the semifinals in doubles.
He and Ma Te will face off against top seeds Ma Long and Xu Xin in the semi-final, while Fan Zhendong and Wang Chuqin secured their match against the pairing of Lin Gaoyuan and Liang Jingkun.
Wang Manyu reaching out to glory
In women’s singles, Wang Manyu continued her sensational form as she defeated He Zhuojia in straight games. Her fierce commitment to reaching the final was evident as she went straight to the other hall and observed what would be her semi-final opponent. What she saw was world no.1 – and her women’s doubles partner – Chen Meng steamrolling her way against Qian Tianyi, winning 4-1.
Having lost in the quarter-finals to He Zhuojia last year, Wang Manyu was particular vocal about her increased strength in training:
“Over the last few weeks, I did some targeted training and preparation to play against the likes of Mima Ito in Japan, who has a very specific style. Every game gives me confidence, including technical changes, which is why this championship is giving everyone a new look and feel.” Wang Manyu
Chen Meng’s victory in the other room was not without drama. She fell behind 3-10 in the first game, before channelling her inner champion to win the next nine points and win 12-10. From there, Chen was in complete control of the match, making sure to point out how important a good start in the quarter-final is in her post-match interview.
In the other two semifinals, young superstar Sun Yingsha accounted for Chen Xingtong while Gu Yuting was involved in a seven-game thrilling win over Wang Yidi.
“I feel I had done enough preparation, so today’s match went smoothly. Now I am going to have a good rest tonight, let go of pressure, and prepare for the semi-finals. The task now is to be myself in the next match, go all out and have no regrets!” Sun Yingsha
Men’s singles semifinals:
Fan Zhendong vs Liang Jingkun (10th October, 11:30 local | 03:30 GMT )
Wang Chuqin vs Ma Long (10th October, 12:30 local | 04:30 GMT)
Women’s singles semifinals:
Wang Manyu vs Chen Meng (9th October, 11:30 local | 03:30 GMT)
Sun Yingsha vs Gu Yuting (9th October, 12:30 local | 04:30 GMT)
Men’s Doubles semifinals:
Ma Long/Xu Xin vs Ma Te/Hou Yingchao (9th October, 10:00 local | 02:00 GMT)
Lin Gaoyuan/Liang Jingkun vs Fan Zhendong/Wang Chuqin (9th October, 15:30 local | 05:30 GMT)
Women’s doubles semifinals:
Chen Meng/Wang Manyu vs Chen Yi/Kuai man (10th October, 10:00 local | 02:00 GMT)
Zhang Qiang/Qi Fei vs Sun Yingsha/Wang Yidi (10th October, 10:45 | 02:45 GMT)