South Korean women’s table tennis sensation Shin Yubin (19-Korean Air) has advanced to the round of 16 after a dramatic upset at the World Championships.
Shin defeated Yuan Jiannan (FRA) in the round of 32 of the women’s singles at the International Table Tennis Federation (ITTF) World Championships 2023 at the Durban International Convention Center (DICC) in Durban, South Africa, on Friday (July 25). Shin, ranked 26th in the world in women’s singles, was down 2 sets to 3 against her 18th-ranked opponent, but rallied to take the next two sets to win the match 4-3 (9-11 11-9 11-9 8-11 9-11 11-5 12-10).
She continues to set new personal bests at the World Championships. At the 2021 World Championships, where she competed at the age of 17, Shin was knocked out in the round of 64 after suffering a wrist injury.
Two years later, she has come back stronger. On this day, she faced Chinese veteran Yuan Jianan and battled to a 2-2 tiebreaker in the fourth set.
The fifth set was at stake. Trailing 4-9, Xin Yubin won five consecutive points to tie the match but lost the set. One set away from elimination.
However, Shin Yubin showed her fearsome backbone. She took a 6-1 lead in the sixth set and went on to win it 11-5 to force the match into a deciding seventh set. In the seventh set, Shin was down 2-6 and faced an 8-10 match point, but she pulled through with a terrifying concentration to win four consecutive points to complete the comeback.
“It was a very difficult match, a tough one, and I’m glad I got through it,” Shin said with a smile after the match. “I don’t usually get goosebumps when I play, but when it was 10-10 (in the final game), I got goosebumps all over,” he said, adding, “It was a fun and happy match, and I think it will be very memorable because we ended up winning.”
Her round of 16 opponent is a daunting prospect. World No. 1 Sun Yingxia (CHINA). Sun Yingxia is coming into the round of 16 on a roll, winning in straight sets. 토토사이트
“I think I’ll have to do everything I can no matter who I’m playing,” said Xin Yubin, adding, “Sun Yingxia doesn’t lose often. That’s why she’s the world number one,” he laughed. “I think she’s a tough player, so I’ll have to prepare thoroughly and make a good match,” he said. She will face Sun Yingxia in the afternoon local time on the 25th.
In the mixed doubles, Shin was unfortunately unable to reach the quarterfinals. She and Lim Jong-hoon (Korea Exchange) lost 0-3 (8-11 5-11 6-11) to Hina Hayata and Tomokazu Harimoto (Japan) in the quarterfinals. Kim Na-young (POSCO INTERNATIONAL) and Cho Dae-sung (Samsung Life) also lost in the round of 16 earlier in the day, meaning that both Korean mixed doubles teams were eliminated.
Lim Jong-hoon, however, joined the men’s singles round of 16. Ranked 11th in the world, Lim defeated Lubomir Pice (86th – Slovakia) 4-2 (7-11 8-11 11-7 11-6 11-7 11-5) in the round of 32. This is his second consecutive round of 16 until Houston in 2021.
Lim will face Chinese living legend Ma Long (World No. 3), a two-time Olympic champion, in the round of 16. Jang Woo-jin (Mirae Asset Securities) also reached the round of 16 in singles. Cho Dae-sung joined Lee Sang-soo (Samsung Life Insurance) in the quarterfinals of the men’s doubles.
Women’s national team veteran Seo Hyo-won (Korea Horse Society) also reached the round of 16 in the women’s singles. She will be looking to reach the quarterfinals for the second consecutive tournament in Houston, USA.