ITTF Sunday

ITTF Pro Tour Grand Final – Sunday 27th November

Sundays play involved action from the Men’s singles and the Women’s Doubles.

In the Women’s doubles the favourites Guo Yue the world number 6 and Li Xiaoxia the world number 2 played the Japanese pairing of Ai Fukuhara and Kasumi Ishikawa in the final. The first set was closely contested with the Chinese team taking the first set 11-7. Strong play from Guo Yue helped the Chinese duo take the second set 11-6. From then on they always looked to powerful for the Japanese women taking the third and fourth set 11-7 and 11-6 respectively to win the match 4 sets to 0 and crowned women’s doubles champions.

The Men’s semi finals was set up for a day of world class table tennis with the world’s top 3 ranked players making the semi finals.

The first semi final of the day saw the Chinese doubles pairing of Ma long the world number 1 and Wang Hao the world number 2 come up against each other. Ma Long always looked very strong showing all aspects of his game taking the match 4 sets to 2.
The second semi final involved the Singaporean world number 18 and common wealth gold medallist Gao Ning playing world number 3 Zhang Ji Ke. Zhang Ji Ke showed why he was the higher ranked player with a fine display of table tennis winning the match 4 sets to 1.

The Final

In the Men’s final Ma Long took on Zhang Ji Ke. Ma Long came into this game as a heavy favourite winning the past 5 meetings between the two of them. In the first set Ma Long raced to a 3-0 lead with an impressive winner cross court. Zhang Ji Ke managed to fight his back but was down 6-5 at the midway point of the set. Ma Long then showed his dominance of the sport by winning 5 consecutive points to take the set 11-5.

The second set was closely contested with Zhang coming out on top with a backhand cross court proving too strong for Ma Long taking the set 11-8. Ma Long then turned up the intensity running away with the third and fourth sets 11-3 and 11-4. The fifth set was tight throughout with Zhang saving a match point but Ma Long powered through to take the set 14-12 and become the Men’s Singles ITTF Pro Tour Finals champion in his preparation of the London Olympics 2012.

See the video below for the final 6 points of the match. Zhang Jike does not capitalise on a set point that would have taken the match to 3-2. After a great rally that puts it to 12-12 Ma Long takes 2 quick points to finish the game 14-12 and win 4-1 over all. (Only the 3rd game he dropped all tournament)