Kobe, Japan, June 28, 2015: XU Xin has broken the hearts of the capacity Japanese crowd by defeating local hero Maharu YOSHIMURA at the GAC Group 2015 World Tour Japan Open (Super Series) men’s singles final.
Chinese XU won his 11th ITTF World Tour title over the surprise finalist, 22 year old YOSHIMURA, who made his way to the final from qualification stage, 9-11, 11-2, 14-12, 11-7, 11-7 today in Kobe, Japan.
XU, who won both the men’s doubles and mixed doubles World Championships crowns earlier this year, stated “This is my first Japan Open, so it is very special for me to win here. Yoshimura played amazingly well. He is still young and is going to be a big rival to me and the Chinese team in the future.”
“He surprised me in the first set, and the large crowd supporting him put me off my game a little. I made some adjustments in the second game and I was very relieved when I won it, to make it 1-1, as then I believed I could win. Winning ITTF World Tour titles are always a great feeling!”
CHEN Meng proved that she is still a top force in women’s table tennis despite not being selected for the singles line-up at the recent World Championships team by becoming the women’s champion.
Making the title even sweeter for CHEN is that she shocked the current World Champion and world number one DING Ning in the semi final, to show her strength.
In the women’s singles final, CHEN won a tight seven-games battle against compatriot ZHU Yuling, who she also beat in the 2011 World Junior Table Tennis Championships final, 13-11,6-11,5-11,11-4,11-5,6-11,11-7 to win her fifth ITTF World Tour title.
After her victory, the excited 21 year old stated “To win the tournament is very important, but more than that, is to improve as a player in each match, which will hopefully lead me to becoming the World Champion one day.”
“I am happy to win this championship. My last two matches were very tough, this victory will give me a lot of confidence in the future.”
World Champion MA Long (CHN) made up for his shocking second round defeat in the singles, which was also his first defeat in 2015, by winning the men’s doubles with teammate and singles champion XU Xin.
The due had too much experience in the crucial moments against their Chinese colleagues FAN Zhendong & SHANG Kun in the final, winning 11-8, 13-11, 7-11, 10-12, 11-8 to ensure the reigning World Champion does not go home empty handed.
China’s defensive pair of LIU Fei & WU Yang continued China’s golden day by defeating Singapore’s LIN Ye & ZHOU Yihan 11-6, 7-11, 11-9, 11-5 to win the Women’s doubles title on their first partnership.
With China sweeping the titles in the senior’s events, it was Japan’s time to shine in the under 21 category. Hitomi SATO (JPN) won her fourth consecutive under 21 women’s title, to score a record of 7 titles under her belt. Teammate Yuya OSHIMA (JPN) made up for losing the under 21 finals at the two previous ITTF World Tour events to become the champion in front of his home crowd.
The world’s best table tennis players now head to the GAC Group 2015 World Tour Korea Open (Super Series) being held in Incheon to fight for more Race to Lisbon points. —- ITTF