Xu Xin defends the ITTF Korea Open with comfortable final win
Xu was rarely troubled in his 11-8 11-6 7-11 11-9 12-10 win in the showpiece against Chinese countryman Fang Bo.
The win marked an impressive response from Xu, who was well beaten by world number two Ma Long in the China Open final last week.
Xu ” who lost the 2012 final before triumphing one year later ” becomes the first player to defend a Korea Open title.
“Although I made history by being the first player to successfully defend the title at the Korea Open, the title itself is not especially significant to me,” Xu is quoted as saying on the ITTF website.
“What made this title special is that today is Father’s Day and I would like to dedicate this title to him.”
In truth, Xu was expected to win the event, given that he was the only top-10 player in the men’s field.
Yet the manner of his victory was impressive, as he dropped just four games in six tournament matches.
The first three rounds saw him complete 4-0 whitewash wins against Yu Jiaqing, Chiang Hung-Chieh and Yuma Tsuboi.
His toughest test came in the quarter-finals, where he beat Yu Ziyang 4-2, before he posted a 4-1 triumph against Kristian Karlsson in the last four.
Qualifier Fang also enjoyed a relatively straightforward run to the final, although Patrick Baum did test him during a semi-final that finished 4-2 in favour of the former.
In the women’s draw, Germany’s Han Ying upset top seed Feng Tianwei 11-6 11-7 11-5 11-7 in the final.
World number five Feng had no answer to Han, who won all five of her matches in the tournament 4-0.
“I certainly didn’t expect to win here in Korea and I’m feeling very happy about it,” Han said after claiming her first ITTF World Tour title.
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