Chinese paddlers Fan Zhendong and Sun Yingsha emerged as winners in the men’s and women’s singles respectively at the newly-founded World Table Tennis (WTT) Cup Finals here on Tuesday.
Top-ranked Fan dispatched Tomokazu Harimoto of Japan 4-1 in the last match of the season-ending tournament inaugurated by the WTT this year.
Fan heated up quickly into the finale, winning the first game 11-8 and establishing a 7-2 lead in the second game, but world No. 1 saw his advantage vanish before losing the game 11-9.
Leading 9-8 in the third game, Fan called a timeout before retaking his superior position with an 11-9 win.
Harimoto let out his trademark roar for every point throughout the match, but found it a daunting task to stop Fan from rolling. The new World Table Tennis Championships titleholder met little resistance thereafter, pocketing the next two games 11-7, 11-5 for his second title in two weeks.
Fan’s compatriot Wang Chuqin and Brazilian ace Hugo Calderano ranked third after losing the semi-finals on Monday.
After falling in the finals of the Olympic Games and World Championships to teammates Chen Meng and Wang Manyu respectively earlier this year, Sun managed to claim a major title in their career by holding off Wang Yidi’s comeback and winning 4-2 in an all-Chinese final, reports Xinhua.
Sun appeared well on her way to becoming the champion by winning the first three games 11-3, 17-15, 11-6, but Wang made the match not a straightforward affair from there, pulling two games back 11-7 and 11-6. Sun held her nerve and sealed the deal by taking away the sixth game 11-8.
Chen and Japan’s Hina Hayata placed third in the women’s category.