Chinese paddlers to kick off team world title defense against U.S., Puerto Rico

0 Comment(s)Print E-mail Xinhua, September 28, 2022
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CHENGDU, Sept. 28 (Xinhua) -- Both the Chinese men and women's teams will play the United States and Puerto Rico in the group stage, as a draw for the 2022 ITTF World Team Table Tennis Championships was made here on Wednesday.

With hosts China leading the seedings, the 32 men's teams were drawn into seven groups and the 28 women's teams into six groups for the round-robin first stage of the team worlds, which begins on Friday and runs through to October 9.

Besides the U.S., China's men's team will also play against Slovenia, Puerto Rico and Thailand in Group 1. World No. 2 Germany, headed by Chinese-born paddlers Qiu Dang and Meng Fanbo, faces challenges from France in Group 2, and Japan will play Hong Kong, China in Group 3.

On the women's side, the Chinese team, led by the Olympic team gold winning trio of Chen Meng, Sun Yingsha and Wang Manyu, will get their squad tested against the U.S., Puerto Rico, Canada and Malaysia. No. 2 seed Japan's Group 2 rivals include Hungary and Poland, while South Korea and Singapore were both drawn in Group 4.

After taking gold in the men's and women's events in Halmstad, Sweden in 2018, China will vie for their 10th consecutive men's team title and fifth straight win in the women's category.

As the 2020 World Team Table Tennis Championships in Busan, South Korea was canceled due to the COVID-19 pandemic, Chengdu 2022 is the sport's first team worlds in four years. China, for the first time after the Beijing 2022 Olympic Winter Games, has welcomed athletes in elite competition. Enditem

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