Ping pong champions excel

PUBLISHED : Wednesday, 12 August, 2009, 12:00am
UPDATED : Wednesday, 12 August, 2009, 12:00am

Hong Kong's junior table tennis squad won three silver and two bronze medals at the 2009 ITTF Junior Circuit - Hong Kong Junior Open, which ended last Sunday at the Queen Elizabeth Stadium in Wan Chai.

The first Hong Kong Junior Open attracted young table tennis players from all over the world, but as usual China was the powerhouse.

The mainland players topped the competition by winning five gold medals out of six events.

Chinese Taipei's 17-year-old Cheng I-ching prevented the mainland from making a clean sweep of titles by winning the girls' singles crown on Sunday.

In a closely contested seven games encounter, she overcame China's Luo Yue 3-2.

Meanwhile, the Hong Kong squad won the boys' and girls' team silver medals, the boys' doubles silver medal and the girls' singles and doubles bronze medals.

Chiu Chung-hei, Hong Kong's No 1 junior table tennis player, paired up with Wing Chun-ting for the boys' doubles.

Although they were defeated by a mainland team of the boys' singles champion Zhou Yu and runner-up Chen Xi, Chung-hei said he was satisfied with his performance.

'The standard of the two mainland players was very high ... Although we lost, I think our performance was not bad,' he said.

His partner Chun-ting said he was not disappointed to lose to the mainland.

'We were even leading by four points [at one point], but we were too eager to win and lost our pace,' he said.

'In contrast, the mainland players stayed calm even they were lagging behind. That's what we have to learn from them.'

Chung-hei said, to his surprise, the mainland's doubles team was not as strong as its singles players.

'In doubles, we not only need to play well, but also need to communicate and co-operate with our partner. I believe in a certain way, our doubles team is strong enough to compete with the mainland,' he said.

The two boys did not have much time to rest. Chung-hei is now in Tianjin , taking part in the China Open, while Chun-ting is heading off to do his table tennis best at the All China Secondary School Students Game in Changsha in Hunan province.