Chinese paddlers stay complete in singles at table tennis worlds

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The Chinese paddlers kept their perfect record alive in the men's and women's singles during the World Championships in Rotterdam on Thursday.

Ma Lin and Ma Long followed reigning champion Wang Hao to the quarterfinals. Ma Lin (3/4) only needed four games to defeat German Bastian Steger in 11-7, 11-7, 11-7, 11-3 and Ma Long (5/8) crushed South Korean Oh Sang Eun in 11-2, 11-2, 11-5, 11-7. They will play each other in the quarterfinals, while Wang Hao is to meet Jun Mizutani from Japan.

Olympic champion Ma Lin was satisfied with reaching the last eight. "After two days of competition, I'm used to playing in the venue and in the atmosphere," he said. "My opponent is quite strong, although he is not as famous as Timo Boll, one of the archrivals of the Chinese team. Therefore, we have done lots of research on him and prepared well for the match. I grabbed an easy win today mainly because I played with good mentality."

Among other qualifiers for fourth round include number two seed Timo Boll from Germany, his compatriot Dimitrij Ovtcharov, Zhang Jike, Xu Xin, Wang Liqin and Chen Qi from China and Vladimir Samsonov from Belarus.

In the women's singles, Liu Shiwen (5/8) and Guo Yan (2) were the last to complete the Chinese dominance in the quarterfinals. Liu Shiwen beat Jiang Huajun from Hong Kong, China 11-5, 11-4, 11- 7, 11-4. Guo Yan was too strong for local Dutch favorite Li Jie 11- 6, 11-7, 11-6, 11-4.

Li Jie was in tears after her defeat. "It's a pity," she said. "I thought I could get small chances, but I had no chance at all. That feels uncomfortable. I tried to fight on because I wanted to play well here in the Netherlands. It's a shame. I tried it and actually I am very happy. I reached the last 16 of the world and that's not bad. I just have to enjoy it."

Li Xiaoxia (1), Guo Yue (3/4), Ding Ning (3/4), Wu Yang (5/8) and Fan Ying (17/32) also booked a place in the quarterfinals and Feng Tianwei will meet Ding Ning in the only non-Chinese quarterfinal.

The mixed doubles final will be all-Chinese between top seeds Hao Shuai/Mu Zi and second seeded Zhang Chao/Cao Zhen. Hao Shuai and Mu Zi beat the Japanese pair Seiya Kishikawa/Ai Fukuhara (3/4) in 11-4, 11-9, 11-4, 11-5, while Zhang Chao and Cao Zhen knocked out Cheung Yuk/Jiang Huajun (3/4) from Hong Kong, China in 11-7, 7- 11, 11-8, 11-7, 11-9. In 2007, Cao Zhen already was mixed double world champion together with Li Ping.

In the men's doubles, top seeds Ma Long and Xu Xin went through to the semifinals by defeating German couple Patrick Baum/Bastian Steger in 11-3, 11-4, 11-6, 11-5. Wang Hao/Zhang Jike, Chen Qi/Ma Lin and South Koreans Jung Young Sik/Kim Min Seok also moved on to the last four.

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