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English Open: China Totally Dominant

ITTF Press Release

China dominated proceedings on Saturday 29th January 2011 at the English Open in Sheffield; such was their superiority that all four titles to be decided on the concluding day of play, Sunday 30th January 2011, will be in Chinese hands.

All four semi-finalists in the Men's Singles and Women's Singles event are from China as are the pairs that will contest the Men's and Women's Doubles finals.

Men's Singles
In the Men's Singles event, WANG Hao, the no.1 seed and reigning World champion, beat Korea's OH Sang Eun, the no.6 seed (12-14, 12-10, 11-4, 11-8, 11-6) to book his place in the penultimate stage, with compatriots MA Lin, CHEN Qi and WANG Liqin following suit.

MA Lin, seeded no.3, beat Korea's RYU Seung Min, the no.8 seed (11-4, 11-4, 6-11, 11-1, 11-5) in the battle between the two most recent Olympic Men's Singles champions. Not to be outdone, CHEN Qi, the 7 seed, accounted for Singapore's GAO Ning, the no.9 seed (11-7, 11-5, 4-11, 11-8, 13-11) after WANG Liqin, the no.4 seed, had won a scintillating full distance seven games duel against compatriot, XU Xin (11-7, 13-15, 9-11, 8-11, 11-3, 13-11, 12-10).

Third Round Sensation
Similarly in the Women's Singles event, the China emerged successful in all four quarter-final duels.

However, in the previous round there was an upset. Japan 17 year Kasumi ISHIKAWA, the no.12 seed, sensationally beat China's GUO Yue, the no.2 seed and 2007 World Champion in round three.

Alas for the Japanese teenager, there was no further progress; she was beaten in four straight games by LI Xiaoxia, the no.6 seed (11-3, 11-3, 11-5, 11-2).

The win for Li Xiaoxia was one of three straight games quarter-final successes for the Chinese female stars; the odd one out was top seed GUO Yan, she needed five games to beat Korea's PARK Mi Young, the no.9 seed (11-5, 8-11, 11-2, 11-9, 11-7).

Impressive Performances
Meanwhile, totally imperious, LIU Shiwen, the no.5 seed, overcame MOON Hyun Jung, the no.26 seed, also from Korea (11-4, 11-4, 11-9, 11-7) and DING Ning, the no.7 seed, caused the one upset of the round.

She beat Singapore's FENG Tianwei, the no.3 seed (12-10, 11-6, 11-9, 11-8) and thus, to some extent, gained revenge for the defeat she had suffered in the final of the women's event at the LIEBHERR World Team Championships last May when China had been sensationally beaten by Singapore.

At the semi-final stage of the Men's Singles event WANG Hao meets MA Lin, whilst CHEN Qi confronts WA Liqin; in the Women's Singles penultimate stage matches GUO Yan faces LIU Shiwen and LI Xiaoxia opposes DING Ning.
Success for China in the singles events and there was also success in the doubles, both finals are all Chinese affairs.

In the Men's Doubles gold medal contest, MA Lin and WANG Hao, the no.3 seeds, meet XU Xin and ZHANG Jike, the no.2 seeds; with the Women's Doubles final seeing DING Ning and LI Xiaoxia, the no.1 seeds, confront GUO Yan and GUO Yue, the no.2 seeds.

Under 21 Events
Gold medals guaranteed on the ultimate day of action but in the two events which concluded on the penultimate day it was success for Korea and Japan.

SEO Hyun Deok, the no.4 seed, beat compatriot Korean national team colleague, KIM Min Seok, the no.2 seed,, in the final of the Under 21 Men's Singles event (11-8, 16-14, 11-9, 11-5); whilst in the counterpart Under 21 Women's Singles final, Japan's KASUMI Ishikawa completed a busy day.

Seeded no.1, she beat KANG Mi Soon, the no.2 seed, also from Korea, at the final hurdle (10-12, 11-3, 11-7, 11-13, 11-8, 11-8).

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