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China reaffirm Asian supremacy in TT

November 20, 2009 17:21 IST

Chinese paddlers reasserted continental supremacy on Friday by defending both the men's and women's team titles on the fourth day of the 19th Asian Table Tennis Championships while Indian men finished a distant seventh in the Champions Division.

Chinese men survived several anxious moments before getting better of Japan 3-2 in a marathon final, while their women counterparts overcame Singapore 3-1 at the Uttar Pradesh Badminton Academy hall in Lucknow.

World Number 16 Zhang Jike, who beat Mizutami Jun (3-1) and Kenta Matsudaira (3-0), was instrumental in China's victory in the four-hour-long high-octane summit clash.

After starting on a losing note with Xu Xin going down 1-3 to Matsudaira, China fought back through Jike in the second match.

Xin also shrug off the hangover to outplay Mizutami (3-2) when China was one down after world number two Ma Long's 0-3 snubbing at the hand of Kishikawa Seiya in third match.

Chinese women reclaimed the honour with some impressive performance by world number nine Ding Ning, who beat world number 11 Wang Yue Gu (3-1) and Feng Tianwei (3-0).

China, which got a winning start through Fan Ying (Feng Tianwei (3-0), lost only when world number four Li Xiaoxin went down to Sun Bei Bei 1-3 in the best-of-five match. 

Indian men finished a distant seventh out of eight teams in the Champions Division when the hosts overcame Singapore 3-2 in a keenly contested play-off.

In the men's play-off, Olympian Achanta Sharath Kamal led the hosts' challenge as the world number 70 first beat Cai Xiaoli 3-0 and then overcame Zi Yang 3-1 in his return tie.

Soumyadeep Roy lost to Yang 1-3 in the opening clash and Anirban Nandy was also outplayed by Xaejie Pang with an identical scoreline.

Roy later proved his mettle in a see-saw fifth and final encounter, in which the Indian got the better of Xiaoli 3-2, giving the motley crowd present at the stadium some reasons to cheer.

In the women's category, six Indians, including reigning national champion Kumaresan Shamini, entered the second round of singles event.

Shamini beat Lam Lai Wa of Macao 4-1, while former national champion Mouma Das and young Divya Deshpande blanked Nepalese Muna Basukala and Yara Saegh of Jordan respectively, with an identical 4-0 scoreline.

Pooja Sahasrabudhee beat Amani Khader of Jordan and Mamata Prabhu overcame Rahima Akter of Bangladesh - 4-0 each - while Madhurika Patkar eliminated Sengdavieng Douangpanya of Laos (4-1). Poulomi Ghatak was lucky to get a bye to the second round.

Among men, Anirban Nandy beat Mustafa Billah (4-0) of Bangladesh and compatriot Aman Balgu outplayed Sengsathid Soukathammavong of Laos (4-0). Sharath was among the five Indians who got byes to the next round of men's singles.

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