They are widely considered as the Republic’s best bet for an Olympic medal, after their silver-winning exploits in Beijing four years ago.
But, with two months to go before London 2012, it seems Singapore’s women’s table tennis team of Wang Yuegu, Feng Tianwei and Li Jiawei have yet to click into gear.
On Friday, Li (ranked 13th) was beaten by Germany’s world No. 131 Sabine Winter in the first round of the China Open. And yesterday, Feng (8th) lost to Belarusian Viktoria Pavlovich (26th) in the Round of 16, before Wang (7th) fell to China’s Fan Ying (17th) in the quarter-finals.
In fact, this has been the worrying trend for the Olympic-bound women this year – being bundled out early by lower-ranked opponents, which does them no good if they want to retain their position as second seeds in the team event behind China. Additionally, they have not beaten any players who are ranked higher than them this year.
STTA technical manager Loy Soo Han admitted they have work to do if they are to at least retain their Olympic silver medal.