China’s Feng Panfeng and Liu Jing added to their quite staggering list of titles by emerging successful at the Tokyo 2020 Paralympic Games on the evening of Saturday 28th August.
Feng Panfeng resisted a brave recovery by Germany’s Thomas Schmidberger to win men’s singles class 3 (11-9, 11-4, 6-11, 4-11, 11-9), rather more comfortably Liu Jing accounted for Korea Republic’s Seo Suyeon to secure women’s singles class 1-2 gold (11-7, 11-8, 9-11, 11-8).
Notably the women’s singles final was a repeat of five years earlier in Rio de Janeiro; on that occasion Liu Jing had prevailed by a very similar margin (11-6, 9-11, 12-10, 11-6).
Both have very similar records with regards to the Paralympic Games; their careers started in 2008 in Beijing, since that date Feng Panfeng has always won men’s singles class 3 and since 2012 in London always the men’s team class 3 event.
Thus, it is six in total; Liu Jing can go one better. Likewise starting in 2008, she has always won women’s singles class 1-2 and always women’s team class 1-3.
Gold for China and more gold is guaranteed; in the women’s singles events, in class 5 Pan Jiaminmeets Zhang Bian in the final, a situation that also applies in class 8 where Mao Jiangdian and Huang Wenjuan face each other in the gold medal match.
Likewise, in the women’s events, Xu Juan is through to the final of class 3 where she meets Slovakia’s Alena Kanova; in class 4, Zhou Ying confronts India’s Bhavinaben Patel. Not to be omitted, Xiong Guiyuan competes for gold in class 9; in the final she opposes Australia’s Lei Li Na.
Similarly, in the men’s singles finals yet to be played, China is very much in evidence.
In class 5, Cao Ningning opposes Germany’s Valentin Baus, in class 7 Yan Shuo confronts Great Britain’s Will Bayley, in class 8, Zhao Shuai opposes Ukraine’s Viktor Didukh.
Meanwhile, Korea Republic is very much in the spotlight. In the men’s singles events, in class 1, Joo Youngdae and Kim Hyeonuk contest gold, in class 4, Kin Younggun faces Turkey’s Abdullah Ozturk.
Play in the individual events concludes on Monday 30th August.
Editor: Ian Marshall