The three time World Cup winner and current World number one Liu Shiwen has qualified for her fifth ITTF Women’s World Cup after she won gold at 2016 ITTF Asian Cup in Dubai, overcoming the reigning Olympic Champion Li Xiaoxia 4-1 (11-8, 11-9, 9-11, 14-12, 11-3).
Liu, who has won 2009, 2012, 2013 World Cup Women Singles titles and 2011, 2012, 2013 World Tour Grand Finals Women Singles titles under her decorations, is now the most successful player along with her senior Zhang Yining. She’s not focusing on a historic fifth title at 2016 version of ITTF Women’s World Cup slated to be held later this year.
Speaking about the win, Liu said, “I’m really happy to win this title today, especially after my early defeat at the ITTF-Asian Olympic Qualifiers just last week.”
“I was indeed affected by that defeat, so for me to forgot that and be ready within a week for this tournament was a challenge. I’m glad I overcame that,” She concluded.
The men’s version, however, saw defending champion Xu Xin claiming his fourth Asian Cup title against grand slam champion Zhang Jike. He came from behind to win the final 4-2 (4-11, 11-7, 11-6, 11-8, 6-11, 11-6).
Speaking on his win, Xu said,“Every time I have come to Dubai I have won a major title, so this is definitely my lucky and special place.”
“This is a major title, won against a very good player (Zhang Jike), so I am very pleased and my confidence is sky high. But this event is just a stepping stone to the Olympic Games. I will now focus on my training to keep my momentum up on the road to Rio,” further, he added.
“This will help my chances to qualify for Rio, but the team is still not decided. I am trying to keep this situation out of my head, and just playing my best and focusing on getting good results,” concluded the master player.