ITTF. The 2013 Korean Open progressed with their first day of the main draw today, April 5, in Incheon. As expected, upsets were recorded but the Chinese top seeds managed to maintain supremacy.
The Chinese delegation undoubtedly encountered some minor challenges today in the Round 32 of the Men's Singles especially Zhang Jike and Wang Hao. Zhang Jike posted a 4-1 against Maharu Yoshimura while Wang Hao got six sets against Jung Young Sik.
Ma Long, Xu Xin, Ma Lin and Yan An all completed a powerful sweep in the round. Xu Xin played much better against Lee Sang Su this time. Ma Lin ended the hopes of the qualifier Thomas Keinath. Lastly, Ma Long and Yan An were not in the moos for a challenge after crushing Li Hu and Emmanuel Lebesson respectively.
The South Korean delegation survived the day with four players getting into the Round 16. As the top-ranking host in the competition, Ryu Seung Min did not disappoint the home crowd despite challenge from the younger teammate Kang Dong Hoon. In six sets, Ryu Seung Min achieved victory.
Lee Jung Woo, Kang Dang Soo and Kim Kyung Min join in today's victory. Among the three, it was the qualifier Kang Dang Soo who made an upset with a 4-3 win over the 16th seed Kazuhiro Chan of Japan.
The Japanese Jun Mizutani recorded a 4-0 against Hong Kong's Tang Peng. He leads the Taku Takakiwa and Koki Niwa into the next round of the competition. Takakiwa swept the host Cho Eon Rae while their promising rookie Koki Niwa defeated Kim Tae Hoon in 4-2.
The highest ranking qualifier Alexey Liventsov is keeping the Russian hope alive in the competition after surviving today's matches. He overcame Taipei's Chiang Hung Chieh and Japanese seed Seiya Kishikawa with a 4-1 score. Liventsov is joined by the French Adrien Mattenet into the next round. Liventsov and Mattenet are the last European players left in the competition.
Zhan Jian is the only Singaporean player left in the competition after he defeated his teammate Chen Feng in 4-1.
The world's top players in the women's division, Ding Ning, Liu Shiwen and Li Xiaoxia were not on duty for the 2013 Korean Open, giving more opportunities for players from other countries to win the Women's Singles title. One of the players who would most likely take this opportunity is the Singaporean Feng Tianwei.
The top seed Feng Tianwei cruised through the Round 64 after posting a 4-0 against Yuki Matsumoto of Japan. In the next round, Feng Tianwei met a young Chinese player, Liu Gaoyang. As a member of the Chinese Team, Liu Gaoyang did not allow an easy match. She was able to afford two sets against Feng Tianwei.
While the top seed achieved success, the second seed Shen Yanfei of Spain was the only upset recorded in the day after losing against Japanese Hiroko Fujii in a sweeping score of 12-10, 11-5, 11-8, 11-6.
Aside from Feng Tianwei, Japanese table tennis stars like Ai Fukuhara and Kasumi Ishikawa also sealed their places in the next round. The Singaporean rookie Yu Mengu lost to Japanese Misako Morizono in 3-4.
Photo source: sports.sohu.com