Chinese women on track at table tennis worlds

Paris, May 18 (IANS) Top seed and defending champion Ding Ning led five Chinese to the quarterfinals of the women’s singles event at the World Table Tennis Championships here.

Ding, also the Olympic silver medallist, eased past 166th-ranked Park Seonghye of South Korea in straight sets 11-8, 11-4, 11-5, 11-7 for the win here Friday, reports Xinhua.

Ding will next take on Ri Myong Sun of the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea, who defeated Austria’s Liu Jia in the other match.

The day’s only loser from the Chinese team is Cheng Meng, who was beaten by Olympic champion and teammate Li Xiaoxia.

Li, the world No. 3, beat Cheng 11-6, 11-6, 11-3, 11-9.

Li will next meet another Chinese Wu Yang, an 11-2, 11-9, 11-4, 11-7 winner over Kim Hye Song of the DPR Korea.

World No. 2 Liu Shiwen eliminated Seo Hyowon of South Korea and Zhu Yuling beat Jiang Huajun of Hong Kong, China.

Chinese men’s team also made no mistakes and there is still no sign that they will have problems in winning the title again. Defending champion Zhang Jike cruised into the last 16 after beating fellow Chinese Fan Zhendong.

Zhang, also the reigning Olympic champion, won in straight sets over the world No. 8 11-9, 11-8, 11-9, 11-5.

The 4th-ranked Zhang will next play Austria’s Robert Gardos, who laboured to beat Egypt’s Omar Assar after the two sides played a full seven sets.

Second seed Ma Long crushed Soumyajit Ghosh 11-8, 11-4, 11-3, 11-9 to book a match against 93rd-ranked Wang Zengyi of Poland.

Third seed Wang Hao set up a showdown in the last 16 against Chinese teammate Gao Ning as he conceded a set in his victory over Iran’s Noshad Alamiyan 11-7, 11-5, 11-2, 10-12, 11-3.

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