Men’s and Women’s world champion relinquish top spots
04/01/2010 – China’s WANG Hao and ZHANG Yining, the winners of the respective Men’s and Women’s Singles titles at the H.I.S. World Championships in Yokohama in May 2009 and listed at no.1 on the ITTF World Rankings throughout the p
04/01/2010 – China’s WANG Hao and ZHANG Yining, the winners of the respective Men’s and Women’s Singles titles at the H.I.S. World Championships in Yokohama in May 2009 and listed at no.1 on the ITTF World Rankings throughout the past year have relinquished their exalted positions.
On the listings issued by the International Table Tennis Federation on Sunday 3rd January 2010, both drop one place to no.2 and both are replaced by youthful compatriots.
MA Long, 21 years old, moves into the top spot on the men’s list; whilst 18 year old LIU Shiwen secures the no.1 position on the women’s rankings. It is the first time that either player has occupied the prestigious position.
MA Long first entered the World Rankings in October 2003 at no.300 and first entered the top 100 in October 2005 at no.51. In March 2007 he secured a top 10 place at no.8; then two years later in March 2009 he gained the no.2 spot, one month later he dropped one place to no.3 but in May he was back in second berth, a place he maintained for the rest of the year.
LIU Shiwen entered the World Rankings in August 2004 at no.95; in July 2007 she clinched a top 50 place at no. 41 and reserved a top ten place less than a year ago. In May 2009, she achieved a ranking of no.7.
There is no change at the listings regarding top European players. German Timo BOLL still occupies spot number 4, Belarus Vladimir SAMSONOV is ranked number 6. Dane Michael MAZE started the new year from the position number 8, one place up comparing the last list from 2009.
In addition, there are no European girls among top 10 players at the ITTF rankings. The best ranked player from Old Continent is European champion WU Jiaduo of Germany at the position no. 15. She moved from spot number 20. LIU Jia of Austria is ranked number 18, at LI Jiao of Netherlands is ranked number 20.
(by Ian MARSHALL, courtesy of ITTF)
Photo: Chinese WANG Hao (Photo Roscher)