Chinese men march on at table tennis worlds

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Defending champion Wang Hao marched forward to the fourth round of the World Table Tennis Championships in Rotterdam on Wednesday.

In the second round the top seed beat Andrej Gacina from Croatia 11-6, 11-7, 8-11, 11-7, 11-6 and in the third round he was the better of Korean Kim Min Seok 11-7, 12-10, 11-7, 5-11, 11-5.

Ma Lin (3/4) also had to play two matches on Wednesday and qualified for the fourth round. The reigning Olympic champion first beat Koki Niwa from Japan 9-11, 11-8, 13-11, 11-7, 11-7 and in the third round he defeated Panagiotis Gionis from Greece 11-1, 11-7, 11-8, 11-8. The latter had beaten 2001 world champion Jorgen Persson in the previous round.

Ma Long had a spectacular encounter with Bojan Tokic and was able to break down the Slovenian in six games: 11-13, 12-10, 9-11, 11-7, 11-9, 11-8. After that he needed little time against Tang Peng from Hong Kong (11-6, 11-5, 11-5, 11-6).

Wang Liqin defeated German Ruwen Filus 16-14, 11-6, 14-12, 11-5 in the second round and Ko Lai Chak from Hong Kong 11-8, 11-9, 11-2, 11-4 in the third.

Second seed Timo Boll played only one round on Wednesday. The German had no problems with Yang Zi from Singapore (11-7, 11-8, 11-3, 11-5).

"It was a good performance today. Solid," Boll said. "My footwork was quite well. I am satisfied. It was a different match compared to yesterday. Matsudaira was more attacking, more risking. I felt not so well during that match, In the end both are good opponents and I am happy to beat them quite easily. Now I just look at the next opponent. That is where I put all my concentration in. I go step by step."

The Chinese remained unbeaten in the men's singles tournament. Zhang Jike (3/4) beat Ri Choi Guk (PRK) 11-3, 10-12, 12-10, 11-7, 12-10 in the second round, Xu Xin knocked out Gustavo Tsuboi (Bra) 11-4, 11-5, 11-6, 11-3 and Chen Qi beat Michal Bardon (SVK) 11-8, 11-4, 11-9, 11-3.

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