Gold medallist in men’s singles class 6-7 at the 2021 Asian Youth Para Games, held in Manama, Bahrain, on the opening day of play, Monday 18th July, at the Thailand Para Open in Pattaya, Hong Kong’s Tong Chi Ming caught the eye.
Competing in men’s singles class 7, the 20-year-old, who started to play table tennis when 11 years old, remained unbeaten to top his initial phase group.
He beat Frenchman Stéphane Messi, the no.2 seed and winner earlier this year on home soil in Saint Quentin en Yvelines (10-12, 11-9, 5-11, 11-9, 13-11), before overcoming India’s Anshul Agarwal (11-9, 11-1, 11-9) and Korea Republic’s Lee Youngmin to book his main draw place.
“I feel amazing because Messi is a strong player and known throughout the world, his years in table tennis are many more than mine. I had no plan; I was very focused, and I was in good shape today. After winning that match I felt more confident; my coach didn’t expect me to win!” Tong Chi Ming.
Safely through to the semi-finals, Tong Chi Ming faces the winner of the contest between the host nation’s Chalermpong Punpoo and Chinese Taipei’s Tong Chi-Yung.