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World Championships Analysis: Ding Ning to remain as dominant force?

(Photo: ITTF)

Ding Ning firmly established herself at the top of women’s table tennis after the Chinese star successfully defended her Women’s Singles crown at the 2017 World Table Tennis Championships.

The World No.1 player in the women’s game enjoyed a strong campaign in Germany, claiming two titles at the big event.

Despite trailing by 1-2 in the Women’s Singles final Ding Ning kept her composure and her capture of three consecutive games completed a powerful 4-2 comeback victory against fellow compatriot Zhu Yuling (11-4, 9-11, 4-11, 12-10, 11-6, 11-7).

Lifting the trophy for the third time in her career, Ding Ning stated her delight at achieving the feat:

“It’s a very special win for me to take a third title! I’m really thankful to all my fans who have been cheering on for me throughout, giving me a lot of encouragement during my match… I came here not expecting to win the World Championships for the third time. It really depended on my state of mind and condition and that of the opponents” – Ding Ning.

Alongside her Women’s Singles win Ding Ning also received a gold medal in the Women’s Doubles draw, partnering up with Liu Shiwen to claim a dramatic triumph (9-11, 11-8, 11-13, 11-8, 11-6, 6-11, 11-9) in a thrilling encounter against another Chinese pairing, Chen Meng and Zhu Yuling.

Editor’s Analysis:

Ding Ning has been at the forefront of the women’s game for a long time now, and whenever questions are asked as to whether she can continue to be the dominant force in the sport, the Chinese star responds by adding yet more silverware to her trophy cabinet.

Not only has Ding Ning won the Women’s Singles prize at the World Championships for the third occasion matching the records of legends Deng Yaping & Wang Nan, but last year she successfully picked up her first Women’s Singles gold medal at an Olympic Games.

Combining her trademark reverse tomahawk serve with a high-intensity attacking game Ding Ning continues to make the headlines on the world stage.

The question is: how long will Ding Ning remain as the dominant force in the game? China has several other players who are fighting to take the World No.1 position away from Ding, and Japan is hoping with the likes of Miu Hirano and Mima Ito continuing to impress that they too can mount a title challenge at the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games.

However, if Ding Ning demonstrated anything at the 2017 World Championships it is that she still has what it takes to lead the playing field and is set to remain right at the very top of the game for a good number of years to come.

Head over to SD Sport’s 2017 World Championships home page here for news, results and more.

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