The tournament at the Tokyo Metropolitan Gymnasium, the venue for table tennis and Para table tennis at the Games, begins tomorrow and concludes on Sunday. China is the top seeds in both the men’s and women’s competitions and will be looking to continue their recent dominance of the event.
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China’s men have won every World Cup since it was relaunched in 2007.They will go in search of an eighth consecutive crown at this year’s tournament, where they are set to field the four top-ranked players in the world.
Fan Zhendong, who recently displaced teammate Xu Xin at the top of the ITTF rankings, will spearhead the Chinese quintet. Xu, Lin Gaoyuan, Ma Long and Liang Jingkun – ranked eighth in the world – complete China’s line-up.
China has been drawn in Group A with Chinese Taipei and Nigeria.Japan, runners-up in London in 2018, are the second seeds and likely to pose the biggest threat to the formidable Chinese team.The Chinese women’s team’s unbeaten run at the World Cup stretches back to 1995 and they will bid for a ninth straight title in the Japanese capital.
China’s squad includes four of the top five players on the ITTF world rankings – world number one Chen Meng, Wang Manyu, Liu Shiwen, and Sun Yingsha.Ding Ning, world-ranked sixth, is the other player on the squad.China will challenge Group A, along with Ukraine and Egypt.
The competition forms part of the “Ready Steady Tokyo” test event series for the 2020 Olympic and Paralympic Games in the Japanese capital.