Chen Meng seeking yet another first
Setting herself new standards, having recently for the first time in her career being crowned national champion, as well as on debut securing the top step of the podium at a Women’s World Cup tournament, Chen Meng is the top seed in the women’s event at the Bank of Communications 2020 ITTF Finals.
Play commences in Zhengzhou on Thursday 19th November.
The favourite for gold but for the 26-year-old, there can be no room for complacency; in the opening round she faces an adversary against whom she has experienced problems in the past. She confronts Japan’s Miyu Kato, the young lady against whom she experienced defeat at the 2009 T2 Diamond in Johor Bahru.
Waiting for the winner in the quarter-final round is either Singapore’s Feng Tianwei, the no.6 seed, or Germany’s Petrissa Solja, the no.14 seed. Status favours Feng Tianwei but Petrissa Solja has won their two most recent encounters, at the 2015 Women’s World Cup, the 2016 Qatar Open.
Notably, also in the upper half of the draw appears Sun Yingsha, the no.3 seed, beaten by Chen Meng in the recent Dishang 2020 Women’s World Cup final. She starts her quest for honours by opposing Korea Republic’s Jeon Jihee, the no.11 seed, a player against whom she has never lost on the international scene.
Evidence in favour of Sun Yingsha, in the same quarter, Japan’s Kasumi Ishikawa, the no.7 seed, also confronts Korea Republic opposition. She encounters Suh Hyowon, the no.16 seed, the adversary she beat in the opening round last week in Weihai. Notably for Kasumi Ishikawa, there is a very definite reason to negotiate the opening round; revenge is in the air, at quarter-final stage in Weihai, she was soundly beaten by Sun Yingsha.
China and Japan very much to the fore; it is the same in the lower half of the women’s draw, in fact the countries meet in round one. Wang Manyu, the no.4 seed, faces Hitomi Sato, the no.12 seed and starts the clear favourite. She has won all five previous international contests. Waiting in the last eight is either Chinese Taipei’s Cheng I-Ching, the no.5 seed or Puerto Rico’s Adriana Diaz, the no.13 seed; their only prior meeting being at the 2015 World Championships when Cheng I-Ching prevailed.
Meanwhile, also advancing the Chinese cause, Wang Yidi plays Austria’s Sofia Polcanova for the first time in her career; the winner confronting either Japan’s Mima Ito, the no.2 seed or Hong Kong’s Doo Hoi Kem.
Bronze medallist at the Dishang 2020 Women’s World Cup, Mima Ito starts the favourite but when considering past performance, it is parity, eight meetings, honours even.
The first round matches come to a conclusion on Friday 20th November.
19th Nov - Chen Meng (CHN) v Miyu Kato (JPN)
19th Nov - Petrissa Solja (GER) v Feng Tianwei (SGP)
19th Nov - Kasumi Ishikawa (JPN) v Suh Hyowon (KOR)
19th Nov - Jeon Jihee (KOR) v Sun Yingsha (CHN)
19th Nov - Wang Manyu (CHN) v Hitomi Sato (JPN)
20th Nov - Adriana Diaz (PUR) v Cheng I-Ching (TPE)
19th Nov - Wang Yidi (CHN) v Sofia Polcanova (AUT)
20th Nov - Doo Hoi Kem (HKG) v Mima Ito (JPN)
Editor: Ian Marshall