Shanghai – China, Nov 25: Born and bred in the locality, XU Xin and WANG Liqin guided the host nation to a resounding victory in the Volkswagen Team Challenge, which concluded in Shanghai on Sunday 25th November 2012. China posted four-nil wins in both the Men’s and Women’s Team events.
On the first day of play, Saturday 24th November, MA Lin had joined forces with WANG Liqin to record a doubles success over the German duo of Timo BOLL and Dimitrij OVTCHAROV, to set China on the road to victory. Immediately MA Lin had followed suit by beating Timo BOLL.
The defeat of the reigning European champion was a body blow for the World Team and on the second day of action, there was to be no miracle recovery. XU Xin beat Denmark’s Michael MAZE before WANG Liqin overcame Dimitrij OVTCHAROV to end proceedings. XU Xin is only 22 years old and is very much a player to whom China looks for the next decade.
Similarly, DING Ning, CHEN Meng and ZHU Yuling, who formed China’s Women’s Team are in the same generation.
DING Ning is the same age as XU Xin, CHEN Meng is 18 years old and ZHU Yuling, one year younger. All three asserted their authority on proceedings in Shanghai. They recorded an impressive four-nil win over the trio formed by Korea’s KIM Kyungah, Singapore’s FENG Tianwei and Romania’s Elizabeta SAMARA.
CHEN Meng and ZHU Yuling won a nail-biting five games contest against FENG Tianwei and Elizabeta SAMARA, before DING Ning overcame KIM Kyungah to give China a two-nil advantage at the close of the first day’s play . On the second day of action, CHEN Meng accounted for Elizabeta SAMARA and ZHU Yuling overcame FENG Tianwei.
A feature of the event was that no coaches were allowed and the World Team could select their respective opponents from the named Chinese trio. China who pocketed US$ 66,000; for the World Team it was US$ 33,000.
Every singles match win was worth US$ 8,000, a loss US$ 4,000; for the doubles match it was US$ 12,000 for the winning team and US$ 6,000 for the losing team.
Men: CHINA 4-0 WORLD TEAM
MA Lin/WANG Liqin 3 – 1 BOLL Timo/OVTCHAROV Dimitrij (6-11, 11-5, 12-10, 11-9)
MA Lin 3 – 1 BOLL Timo (9-11, 11-8, 11-7, 11-9)
XU Xin 3 – 1 MAZE Michael (11-4, 9-11, 11-5, 11-9)
WANG Liqin 3 – 2 OVTCHAROV Dimitrij (11-5, 10-12, 7-11, 11-5, 11-3)
Women: CHINA 4-0 WORLD TEAM
CHEN Meng/ZHU Yuling 3 – 2 FENG Tianwei/SAMARA Elizabeta (11-1, 4-11, 6-11, 11-8, 15-13)
DING Ning 3 – 1 KIM Kyungah (11-1, 11-5, 2-11, 11-9)
CHEN Meng 3 – 1 SAMARA Elizabeta (9-11, 11-5, 11-5, 11-7)
ZHU Yuling 3 – 1 FENG Tianwei (8-11, 11-6, 11-1, 11-9). —- ITTF/Photo Courtesy of Organizing Committee