Jaipur, India, March 16, 2015: Singapore’s FENG Tianwei made history on 15 March 2015, as she upset the top seed, LIU Shiwen (CHN) at the GAC Group 2015 Asian Cup held from 13 – 15 March 2015 in the Indian city of Jaipur.
The GAC Group 2015 Asian Cup is the continental qualification for the Men’s & Women’s World Cups later in the year, with the top three placed players gaining direct entry to the prestigious events.
In the Women’s Singles gold medal match, FENG overcame world number three LIU 4-2 (8-11, 11-8, 11-9, 7-11, 11-1, 12-10) to claim her first ever Asian Cup gold, breaking China’s streak of eight consecutive gold in the Women’s Singles category.
Earlier in the group stage, 28 year old FENG also defeated the other Chinese female player in action, ZHU Yuling, in 3 straight games (11-7, 11-5, 11-5), which is her first win in nine encounters with ZHU on the international arena.
After her triumph against the world number three in the final hurdle, an excited FENG shared “I never thought I would win! In the sixth game I knew I had a chance, I wanted to win so much, I was so nervous!”
In a tense final against compatriot FAN Zhendong (CHN), World number 2 XU Xin (CHN) came back from 1-3 deficit to win 4-3 (11-8, 11-13, 11-13, 5-11, 11-8,11-4, 11-7, taking his third Asian Cup Men’s Singles crown.
Despite winning in the 7-games thriller against the reigning Youth Olympic Champion, XU stated, ‘I won the first game quite comfortably, and I believed that I could win. However, I made some mistakes during the match and lost the next three games. After losing the fourth game, I tried to stay calm.”
“FAN Zhendong played well, he was very positive. It was just as hard today as two years ago in Hong Kong” added the 25-year-old.
In the bronze medal match, Japan’s Jun MIZUTANI & China’s ZHU Yuling secured the third ticket to the Men’s & Women’s World Cups respectively. MIZUTANI had accounted for TANG Peng (HKG) 4-0 (11-4, 11-6, 11-9, 11-8), while ZHU defeating Ai FUKUHARA (JPN) 4-1 (11-8, 7-11, 12-10, 11-6, 11-9), to gain direct qualification from the Asian Cup.
With the conclusion of the GAC Group 2015 Asian Cup, all eyes now turn to the GAC Group 2015 ITTF World Tour German Open that starts 18 March in Bremen, Germany.
Qualifications for ITTF Men’s & Women’s World Cups:
• NN Table Tennis Club 2015 ITTF-Europe Top 16 Cup: Dimitrij OVTCHAROV (GER), Marcos FREITAS (POR), Panagiotis GIONIS (GRE), LIU Jia (AUT), Petrissa SOLJA (GER), Irene IVANCAN (GER) GAC Group 2015 Asian Cup: XU Xin (CHN), FAN Zhendong (CHN), Jun MIZUTANI (JPN), FENG Tianwei (SIN), LIU Shiwen (CHN), ZHU Yuling (CHN). —- ITTF