Paddlers get good draw for team worlds
The Singapore women's team have been handed a favourable draw for the World Team Table Tennis Championships in Kuala Lumpur next month.
In a draw held in the Malaysian capital yesterday, Feng Tianwei and Co were placed in Group C with Holland, Poland, Ukraine, France and Belarus.
World No. 1 China are in Group A with Taiwan, Romania, Hungary, Spain and Malaysia.
Women's head coach Liu Jiayi said: "Singapore are the only Asian team in the group and our main competitors are Holland and Poland. Holland are stronger but they do have older players, and the choppers from Poland are strong competitors, too."
World No. 8 Feng, 29, said: "We are expecting tough competition at the world championships and I would say that this is the best draw for the women's team."
The Republic's men's team were drawn in Group C with Japan, Portugal, Poland, Belarus and Ukraine, while raging favourites China are in Group A with Austria, Taiwan, Greece, Czech Republic and North Korea.
Singapore men's deputy head coach Wang Xiang said: "It will be tough for the men's team in the group stage - Japan and Portugal are very strong competitors.
"At the last championships, credit goes to Clarence Chew for playing well against Ukraine. However, we will do our best to fight at this upcoming championships."
The men fell 3-0 to Germany in the quarter-finals of the last team championships in 2014, while the women were joint-third with Hong Kong.
- MEN: Gao Ning, Yang Zi, Pang Xuejie, Clarence Chew, Ethan Poh
- WOMEN: Feng Tianwei, Yu Mengyu, Isabelle Li, Zhang Wanling, Yee Herng Hwee