National team members Kong, Ma, Wang and Qin advanced to the semifinals. First-seeded Kong played Hong Kong's Li Jing in the quarters. Despite Li Jing's ferocious 3-ball attacks and losing 12-21 in game 3, Kong emerged as a 3-1 winner (17, 14, -12, 19). Wang Liqin faced another Hong Kong player, Leung Chu-Yan, and did not have an easy time in the beginning. He trailed 3-9 in the first game, but caught up at 12-all. Wang now got into his rhythm, and his powerful two-winged loops started to dominate the exchanges. He won the first game 21-19. Leung could not slow down Wang's pace, and quickly lost the next 2 games at 10 and 11. The third Hong Kong representative Ko Chak Li had his chances against Jiangsu's Qin Zhijian. Ko was ahead 2-0 in games before Qin tied things up with two consecutive 21-15 games. In the decider, Qin opened a 6-0 lead and cruised to a 21-16 victory. The last quarters match pitted Ma Lin against Shandong's Guo Keli. Ma won in 3 games, but a couple of the games were close: 19, 9 and 19.
Kong vs Ma
Qin vs Wang
These are similar to the match-ups in the Osaka Worlds, with penholder Qin replacing Chiang Peng-Lung. In the 8th National Games (1997), the finals were played between Wang Tao and Ma Lin, with Wang winning a very tough 5 game match.
Wang Nan vs Tie Yana: 3:0 (20, 16, 14)
Yang Ying vs Sun Jin: 3:0 (13, 17, 13)
Zhang Yining vs Zhang Rui: 3:1 (13, 14, -15, 15)
Lin Ling vs Li Fun: 3:1 (-18, 17, 17, 19)
(5th - 8th place matches)
Tie Yana vs Sun Jin: 3:0 (Sun withdrew)
Li Fun vs Zhang Rui: 3:1
Wang Nan vs Yang Ying: 3-1 (16, 19, -22, 18)
Zhang Yining vs Lin Ling 3:1 (14, -17, 12, 16)
Wang Nan vs Zhang Yining: 3-2 (-15, -16, 16, 13, 5)
The final match was almost a repeat of the Eindhoven Worlds. Zhang started well and took the first 2 games. Then Wang asserted control, and now Zhang appeared passive and more error-prone. In the 5th Wang totally dominated, and won by a blow-out score.
It seems like injuries are the only way to keep Wang out of first place these days. Wang Nan, like Wang Liqin, has not lost a major singles match in a long time. The last defeats at the World Cup were results of her foot injuries and subsequent withdrawals.
Ma Lin/Liu Guozheng vs Liu Guoliang/Wang Tao: 3:0 (22, 19, 10)
Gao Wei/Liu Heng (Beijing) vs Chen Junji/Ye Routing (Sichuan): 3:1 (-17, 16, 16, 18)
Ma.Liu vs Gao/Liu: 3:2 (-23, -11, 18, 19, 16)
The men's doubles final was a very exciting match. Liu Heng and Gao Wei were well-prepared and an experienced doubles team from Beijing. Ma/Liu started well, but Liu/Gao tied the game up at 19-all, then proceeded to take the first 25-23. In the second, Liu/Gao played superbly, and won easily 21-11. Two games down, Ma/Liu now realized the difficult spot they were in and increased their attacks. They won a tough 21-18 3rd game. In the 4th, the Beijing team appeared to play without pressure, and led 18-12, after a 10-10 tie. Now Ma/Liu showed their fighting spirits. With the crowd cheering them on, they won 10 points in a row, and finally saved the 4th game 21-19. In the 5th, the match was still very close. After the scored was tied up at 13-all, Liu/Ma started to open a lead, and their opponents appeared a little hesitant. Finally, Ma./Liu won the decider 21-16. even though the Beijing team lost, they have shown their excellent abilities.
Wang Nan/Zhang Rui vs Zhang Yining/Guo Yan: 2:0 (16, 16)
Zhang Hui/Tie Yana (Henan) vs Wang Hui/Fan Ying (Heilongjiang): 2:1 (-13, 16, 10)
Niu Jianfeng/Bai Yang vs Sun Jin/Wang Yuegu (PLA): 2:0 (6, 19)
Li Ju/Zhang Yingying vs Qiao Yunping/Li Fun (Shandong): 2:1 (20, -16, 18)
Worlds champions Qin Zhijian/Yang Ying successfully defended their National Games title by winning every game.
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