Two-time Olympic champion and three-time World Champion Ning Ding of China won her third World Cup title with a straight-set sweep of teammate Yuling Zhu in the Uncle Pop Women’s World Cup in Chengdu (CHN).
Ding played four matches and won 4-0, 4-1, 4-0 and 4-0 for a 16-1 sets record during the event; she came into the final against Zhu, who had also compiled a 12-1 sets record in winning her three matches. But it was no contest.
“I’m very happy with my victory, and I think I’m really fortunate to be able to win the title on all three occasions I played,” said Ding afterwards. “It’s indeed something to be excited about. I think this is definitely one of my best matches this year, I have been having ups and downs over the past few months, but today I played really well, and I see this as a new starting point.
“Today, even though I was able to win 4-0, it’s definitely not an easy match, especially towards the latter of the match, both of us played at a very high level. I was able to stay calm and implement my strategies firmly.”
The all-Chinese final was not a surprise. With Ding’s win, Chinese players have won this tournament 21 of the 22 times it has been held. Moreover, Chinese players have won the silver medal now 16 times out of 22 editions.
Next up is the men’s World Cup from 19-21 October in Paris (FRA). Summaries from Chengdu:
ITTF Women’s World Cup
Chengdu (CHN) ~ 28-30 September 2018
(Full results here)
Final Standings: 1. Ning Ding (CHN); 2. Yuling Zhu (CHN); 3. I-Ching Cheng (TPE); 4. Kasumi Ishikawa (JPN). Semis: Ding d. Ishikawa, 4-0; Zhu d. Cheng, 4-1. Third: Cheng d. Oshikawa, 4-1. Final: Ding d. Zhu, 4-0 (11-9, 11-8, 12-10, 11-8).