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TABLE TENNIS/Taiwan advances to men's World Team Table Tennis Championships semis

02/23/2024 10:34 PM
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Taiwanese table tennis players Chuang Chih-yuan (right) and Lin Yun-ju. CNA file photo
Taiwanese table tennis players Chuang Chih-yuan (right) and Lin Yun-ju. CNA file photo

Taipei, Feb. 23 (CNA) Taiwan's male paddlers made it to the World Team Table Tennis Championships semifinals Friday after sweeping their German opponents 3-0 in Busan, South Korea.

This is the team's best performance in the tourney over the past decade, tying its record set in Tokyo in 2014.

The sweep was achieved following a dogfight lasting over 2.5 hours, with Chuang Chih-yuan (莊智淵) and Lin Yun-ju (林昀儒) defeating their opponents in consecutive 3-2 thrillers, followed by a 3-1 win by Kao Cheng-jui (高承睿).

Chuang, now 42, and world No. 10 Dang Qiu were tied 2-2 after the first four games before Chuang pulled ahead and took a 10-5 lead for a match point.

Although he yielded four points in a row, the Taiwan table tennis legend had no difficulty closing out the game.

The second match saw Lin take on Dimitrij Ovtcharov, against whom he has won three times and lost four times, including a 3-4 defeat in the men's singles bronze playoff at the Tokyo Olympics.

Lin lost the first two games, before he pulled it back with three consecutive 11-9 games, drawing oohs and ahhs from spectators.

The 19-year-old Kao lost his first game to Patrick Franziska but was triumphant in the next three to take the win.

Taiwan is set to face off against France in the semifinals at 5 p.m. on Saturday local time.

(By Li Chien-chung and Chao Yen-hsiang)


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