Singapore's strongest players in Table Tennis are Feng Tianwei, Wang Yuegu and Li Jiawei who are also their delegates for the London Olympics. Feng Tianwei and Wang Yuegu will play in both Singles and Team events while Li Jiawei will only be participating in the Team event.
Feng Tianwei and Wang Yuegu are perhaps the most dominant figures within the Singaporean Table Tennis Team without totally leaving Li Jiawei out of the picture. As the highest ranking players as well, Feng and Wang carry the Women Singles task in London. Despite such image, Feng Tianwei and Wang Yuegu surprisingly haven't done quite well in the Olympics.
Four years ago in Beijing, Feng Tianwei was defeated in the quarterfinals against Zhang Yining while Wang Yuegu was ousted in the earlier part of the competition against Wu Xue of Dominican Republic.
On the other hand, in 2004 and 2008, Li Jiawei is the only player among the Singaporean lineup to have the longest exposure, reaching the semifinals in both occasions. In Athens, Li Jiawei was ranked fourth after losing against North Korean Kim Hyang Mi. Four years after, Li Jiawei was once again ranked fourth after experiencing defeat from Zhang Yining.
Just basing from these results, Li Jiawei looks more promising in the Women Singles. However, this time in London Li Jiawei only participates in the Team event, leaving the burden to Feng Tianwei and Wang Yuegu.
"I do not have anything to grasp but I will fight as far as possible and I hope our team can have an excellent performance. According to the main draw, I may encounter the Chinese players in the semifinals. It will be difficult but I still hope to win a medal. So that I will have a breakthrough coming from my efforts." Feng Tianwei said.
Because of rather poor results of Feng Tianwei, Wang Yuegu and Li Jiawei in recent months, their ranking as a team went down to third place. Because of this they risked being set in the same half of the draw as the Chinese team, which will mean Singapore would have to face them before an eventual final. Fortunately for them, Singapore was set in the opposite half, and their only possibility to face China would be in a final.
"Me, Feng Tianwei and Wang Yuegu have never won an Olympic medal before the 2008 Beijing Olympics. Everyone was expecting for us but I know that there were no assurance that we get them. This time is not the same. We are currently one of the strongest teams and this is the time that our technical skills are at its highest level. I hope to earn better results this time." Li Jiawei said.
Although winning against the Chinese players seem like a mountain to climb, these players are still not invincible. In history, these Chinese players have already experienced defeat and the usual perpetrators are the Singaporean women Feng Tianwei, Wang Yuegu and Li Jiawei. In London, these Singaporeans are capable for another upset.
Singaporean Women Team
Photo source: zimbio.com