SPORTS Chinese paddlers Wang/Sun retain mixed doubles title at Durban worlds


Chinese paddlers Wang/Sun retain mixed doubles title at Durban worlds


19:47, May 26, 2023

China's Wang Chuqin (L) and China's Sun Yingsha (R) compete during the mixed doubles table tennis final match at the 2023 ITTF World Table Tennis Championships Finals in Durban on May 26, 2023. (Photo: CFP)

DURBAN, South Africa, May 26 (Xinhua) -- China's Wang Chuqin and Sun Yingsha retained their mixed doubles title at the ITTF World Table Tennis Championships (WTTC) Finals here on Friday.

In a repeat of the tournament's final in Houston two years ago, the top-ranked Chinese pair overwhelmed world No. 2 Tomokazu Harimoto and Hina Hayata of Japan 11-6, 11-2 and 11-7.

It was also China's third straight mixed doubles title at the table tennis worlds since Xu Xin and Liu Shiwen won in Budapest in 2019.

Wang and Sun broke open a 6-6 tie early with five points in a row to move one game ahead.

The Chinese duo showed no signs of slowing down in the second game on their way to a lopsided victory.

Trailing 3-4 in the third game, Harimoto and Hayata called a timeout, but the tactic did not work, as Wang and Sun became unplayable en route to lifting the Heydusek Cup once again.

"We had encountered some challenges in previous matches here, but today we encouraged each other on the court to win," commented Sun.

Their biggest test came in Thursday's semifinal, where they edged out Wong Chun Ting and Doo Hoi Kem of Hong Kong, China in full games.

"After our nail-biting win in the semifinal, we made quick adjustments and had better communication. I think we built better chemistry today," said Wang.

Reflecting on their progress over the past two years, Sun said, "He always said that I had developed more quickly than him, but he has made big progress as well over these two years, especially in the singles event, and he has become more mature."

"We have attached great importance to the mixed doubles and trained a lot in this event, so winning this title is huge recognition for both of us," the women's singles world No. 1 added.

"Hopefully we can be better in the next two years," Wang noted.

China's young pair of Lin Shidong and Kuai Man shared the bronze medal with Wong and Doo.

Photo: International Table Tennis Federation

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