Fang Bo; London Decision Reversed

Austria, Jan 28, 2013: China dominated proceedings on the concluding day of action, Sunday 27th January, at the ITTF 2013 World Tour Austrian Open in Wels, the first Major Series tournament of the year.

All four titles on offer finished in Chinese hands with DING Ning, the reigning World champion, emerging the most successful player and FANG Bo securing a landmark win.

Crowned World Junior champion in the northern Colombian city of Cartagena de Indias in December 2009, FANG Bo won the Men’s Singles title; now 21 years old he upset the seeding to secure his first ever senior international crown of note.

The no.27 seed, he beat Chinese Taipei’s CHUANG Chih-Yuan, the no.2 seed, in the semi-finals before overcoming compatriot, HAO Shuai, the no.3 seed in the final; at the penultimate stage, HAO Shuai had ended the progress of Japan’s Taku TAKAKIWA, the no.15 seed, who one day earlier in the quarter-finals had beaten China’s ZHANG Jike, the reigning Olympic and World champion.

A first for HAO Shuai, two titles and revenge for DING Ning, the reigning World champion; she joined forces with LI Xiaoxia to secure the Women’s Doubles crown at the expense of teenage colleagues, CHEN Meng and ZHU Yuling to start the afternoon on a high note.

Later in the day, DING Ning and LI Xiaoxia met in the Women’s Singles final, victory went to DING Ning; thus the result of early August 2012 in the final of the Women’s Singles event at the London Olympic Games was reversed.

However, it was hollow victory; after losing the first two games, LI Xiaoxia withdrew with a wrist injury.

At the semi-final stage DING Ning, the no.1 seed had beaten compatriot WU Yang, the no.4 seed; LI Xiaoxia had overcome Japan’s Kasumi ISHIKAWA, the no.3 seed.

Defeat for HAO Shuai in the Men’s Singles final but there was success for the 28 year old left hander; he partnered ZHANG Jike to Men’s Doubles gold. The pair beat Chinese Taipei’s CHUANG Chih-Yuan and HUANG Sheng-Sheng in the final.

Men’s Singles: Semi-Finals

HAO Shuai (CHN) bt Taku TAKAKIWA (JPN) 11-4, 11-6, 11-7, 11-4

FANG Bo (CHN) bt CHUANG Chih-Yuan (TPE) 12-10, 11-6, 11-13, 11-3, 11-5


FANG Bo (CHN) bt HAO Shuai (CHN) 11-8, 9-11, 2-11, 11-6, 11-8, 11-8

Women’s Singles: Semi-Finals

DING Ning (CHN) bt WU Yang (CHN) 11-3, 11-7, 6-11, 11-2, 7-11, 11-8

LI Xiaoxia (CHN) bt Kasumi ISHIKAWA (JPN) 13-11, 9-11, 11-4, 11-6, 11-5


DING Ning (CHN) bt LI Xiaoxia (CHN) 12-10, 13-11 withdrew

Men’s Doubles: Final

HAO Shuai / ZHANG Jike (CHN) bt CHUANG Chih-Yuan / HUANG Sheng-Sheng (TPE) 9-11, 11-6, 9-11, 11-7, 14-12

Women’s Doubles: Final

DING Ning / Li Xiaoxia (CHN) bt CHEN Meng / ZHU Yuling (CHN) 11-9, 11-6, 15-13 —- ITTF/ Photo by Plohe

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