Sports

Koen Pang attains world No. 1 ranking for Under-18 paddlers

Teenage paddler Koen Pang has become the first Singaporean to attain the International Table Tennis Federation's (ITTF) world No. 1 ranking for Under-18 players.

The 17-year-old displaced Russia's Lev Katsman, who had held the top spot for the past three months.

Said Koen: “I am very happy that I am able to achieve this target. It's a milestone and I'm really grateful for the support given to me by Singapore Table Tennis Association, Sport SG, Singapore Sports Institute and Singapore Sports School.

"I hope this will spur the younger players to believe that with hard work and perseverance, all things are possible!’’

Koen, who was promoted to the senior national team in January, had reached the world No. 2 spot in June, when he also won three gold medals (mixed doubles, boys’ doubles and boys’ team) at the South-east Asia Junior & Cadet Table Tennis Championships.

He maintained the No. 2 spot in July and was the fourth-ranked paddler for August, before moving up to the top for September.

His coach Gao Ning said: ‘’I am so proud of Koen’s achievement. Koen has worked very hard for it and he truly deserves this new accomplishment. I encourage Koen to continue to work hard as this is just the beginning and I look forward to many more of his accomplishments.’’

Koen Pangtable tennis