Even Jang Woo-jin, the pride of Korean men’s table tennis, could not overcome the Great Wall of China.
Jang Woo-jin defeated China’s Pan Zhendong, ranked No. 1 in the world, with a game score of 1-4 (4-11 14-12 7-11 5-11 7-11) in the Hangzhou Asian Games table tennis men’s singles semifinal held at the Gongsu Canal Sports Park in Hangzhou, China on the 2nd. ) lost. Although he took two games with difficulty, he bowed out by dropping the rest of the games. With this, the singles competition ended with a bronze medal.
The opponent’s wall was very high. Pan Zhendong is currently considered the number one player in China, the strongest table tennis country. He knows how to both attack and defend with a solid backhand, and he can freely hit the ping pong ball with a faster reaction speed than anyone else.
Jang Woo-jin is ranked 13th in the men’s table tennis world rankings, the highest ranking among the Korean players. True to his reputation, he went smoothly in the Asian Games singles match, and in the quarterfinals against Japan’s Tomokazu Harimoto, he won the full game 4-3 with a tenacity that did not give up until the end.
Jang Woo-jin, who had the momentum, was shaken as he easily lost the first game 4-11. However, he balanced things out by winning game 2 14-12.
The deciding factor was 3 games. In the middle of the game, Jang Woo-jin and Pan Jeon-dong were in a tight battle. Jang Woo-jin, who was behind 6-9, tried to score with a quick attack, but Pan Zhendong did not waver and received all of the attacks. Conversely, they reached the game point first by attacking the empty space in the opponent’s camp, and took the game to 3 with 11-7.
Pan Zhendong, who had won, pushed Jang Woo-jin even harder in the fourth game. With the agility of the world’s No. 1 player, he gradually accumulated points, and advanced to the finals with an 11-7 victory.
Korea, which has completed its men’s table tennis singles journey, will play its final match at 7:30 pm on the same day. Jeon Ji-hee and Shin Yu-bin face off against each other for the women’s doubles gold medal. Their opponents were North Korea’s Cha Soo-young and Park Soo-kyung, who defeated India’s Sutirtha Mukherni and Aihika Mukherjee 4-3 in the semifinals.
Korea’s last gold medal in table tennis at the Asian Games dates back to the 2002 Busan Games. At that time, Lee Eun-sil and Seok Eun-mi won the women’s 토토랭크doubles championship, and Lee Cheol-seung and Yoo Seung-min won the men’s doubles championship.