China kept up their unassailable recent record as they again won both the men’s and women’s events at the ZEN-NOH ITTF Team World Cup.

The men’s team beat South Korea, while the women triumphed against hosts Japan in Tokyo, though the men’s final was not the stroll to gold that might have been anticipated.

The Koreans took the lead by winning the opening doubles 3-2, with Lee Sangsu & Jeoung Youngsik thrillingly turning the game around from a 2-0 deficit to win 12-10 in the fifth against Xu Sin & Liang Jingkun.

World No 1 Fan Zhendong made it 1-1 with a 3-0 victory over Jang Woojin, but the match hinged on the next clash, between Jeoung and Liang.

Jeoung came from 1-0 down to lead 2-1 and had a match point to put Korea back in front – but Jiang dug deep and won the fourth 15-13 before taking the decider 11-8.

Fan’s 3-0 win over Lee then completed China’s triumph, and Fan admitted: “This was a very tough match indeed. They made it a huge challenge for us, both for me and the rest of my team, but luckily we made it in the end.”

The women’s final was a bit more straightforward as China won the doubles 3-0 through Chen Meng & Liu Shiwen against Kasumi Ishikawa & Miu Hirano.

Mima Ito held a 2-0 lead for Japan over Sun Yingsha in the battle of two teenagers in match 2, but the Chinese fought back to level and then saved three match points before taking the decider 12-10.

Liu’s win in three straight over Hirano completed the scoreline for the victors.


Men’s final
China 3 South Korea 1
Lee Sangsu & Jeoung Youngsik bt Xu Xin & Liang Jingkun 3-2 (8-11, 4-11, 12-10, 11-7, 12-10)
Fan Zhendong bt Jang Woojin 3-0 (11-8, 11-8, 11-9)
Liang Jingkun bt Jeoung Youngsik 3-2 (11-9, 8-11, 10-12, 15-13, 11-8)
Fan Zhendong bt Lee Sangsu 3-0 (11-8, 11-4, 11-8)

Women’s final
China 3 Japan 0
Chen Meng & Liu Shiwen bt Kasumi Ishikawa & Miu Hirano 3-0 (11-7, 11-9, 12-10)
Sun Yingsha bt Mima Ito 3-2 (8-11, 9-11, 11-6, 11-7, 12-10)
Liu Shiwen bt Miu Hirano 3-0 (11-3, 11-8, 11-5)