Chinese table tennis teen Sun Ying-sha wins women's Japan Open title while Ma Long takes the mens'

Chinese table tennis teen Sun Ying-sha wins women's Japan Open title while Ma Long takes the mens'

16-year-old rising star Sun surges past her elders while world No. 1 Ma confirms dominance on men's side


Sun Ying-sha smashes a forehand in the final at the Japan Open against Chen Meng
Photo: Kyodo

China’s 16-year-old Sun Yingsha capped a stunning ITTF World Tour debut by winning the Japan Open women’s singles on Sunday, while world No. 1 Ma Long claimed his first title.

Sun, who won the women’s doubles title a day earlier at Tokyo Metropolitan Gymnasium, was on dangerous ground against world No. 5 Chen Meng after falling behind 3-1, but beat her compatriot 4-3 in an aggressive yet composed display.

“The doubles win yesterday gave me the confidence. I wasn’t sure if I could win today, but am glad I did,” said Sun, who defeated 18-year-old 2014 and 2015 world junior champ Wang Man-yu in semifinals in straight games.

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Wang had won against Japan’s Kasumi Ishikawa and 16-year-old Mima Ito en route to the semifinals, while Chen, who beat Germany’s Han Ying in the semis, had ousted 17-year-old Asian champ Miu Hirano a day earlier.

Chen, 23, said the youngster was the worthy winner.

“She has her own style, she plays at pace and is mature with her game,” Chen said. 

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In the men’s singles, top seed Ma worked his way past third-ranked countryman Xu Xin in the semis before downing second seed Fan Zhen-dong 4-1 in the final.

“I was here 10 years ago but finished second, so I’m really happy to win today,” 28-year-old Ma said after beating Fan in a repeat of their worlds final.

Japanese fourth seed, Jun Mizutani, went out 4-1 to Fan in the semifinals. He gave the home faithful a lift by winning the fourth game, but a slow start cost him dearly and dashed hopes of a Japanese appearing in a singles final.


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