Singapore's Yu Mengyu and Clarence Chew bow out after tough battles
Singapore's Yu Mengyu and Clarence Chew crashed out of the Seamaster T2 Diamond Singapore, the second and final stop of the T2 Diamond Table Tennis League, at Our Tampines Hub yesterday.
But the duo, who were the competition's host-exempted players, did not bow out without a fight.
Yu lost 4-2 (11-7, 11-5, 11-5, 9-11, 3-5, 5-4) to China's Chen Xingtong, but threatened to pull off a comeback as the match entered the "Fast 5" phase (first to five points), which kicks in when there is no winner after 24 minutes.
World No. 45 Yu, who had trailed 3-0, won the next two games to narrow the deficit to 3-2, but the 12th-ranked Chen sealed her quarter-final spot by clinching the following game.
Chen, who admitted that she was still getting used to this format, paid tribute to Yu.
Her last-eight opponent will be compatriot and world No. 5 Wang Manyu, who turned the tables on fourth-ranked Zhu Yuling by making the most of the "Fast 5" format.
It seemed like yesterday's morning's match between the two Chinese players would be a repeat of the final during the July leg in Malaysia, where Zhu prevailed.
Wang was trailing 3-1 (10-11, 5-11, 11-10, 1-5), but won the next three "Fast 5" games (5-4, 5-0, 5-4) to triumph 4-3.
She said: "I couldn't really get into the match even when it reached the 'Fast 5', then it was a matter of adjusting and making sure I lasted the distance."
Singapore's world No. 276 Chew took the fight to the fifth-ranked Tomokazu Harimoto, before Japan's top male player won 4-1 (11-6, 7-11, 11-5, 11-10, 5-2).
Chew, whose next assignment is the Nov 30-Dec 11 SEA Games, said: "It was great to be in this tournament in the company of the world's best players.
"I had nothing to lose, so I just went out and did my best. Tomo is very experienced and he handled the big points better."
Singapore's remaining representative Feng Tianwei takes on world No. 1 Chen Meng today.
For more information, visit t2diamond.com. Tickets are available via www.sistic.com.sg.