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Chinese paddlers meet few challenges in ITTF Qatar Open qualifiers

(Xinhua)    16:05, March 04, 2020

China's Yan An hits a return during the men's singles first round match between China's Yan An and India's Harmeet Desai at 2020 ITTF Qatar Open in Doha on March 3, 2019. (Photo by Nikku/Xinhua)

DOHA, March 3 (Xinhua) -- Chinese paddlers mostly fared through men's singles qualifying first round in ITTF World Tour Platinum Qatar Open, with Fang Bo losing a seven-game thriller an exception here on Tuesday.

Seven Chinese paddlers appeared in Tuesday's qualifying opening round. After being dragged into a deciding game, Fang faltered 12-10 to Swede Truls Moregard.

Xiang Peng had to go through the seventh game by triumphing 11-6 over Frenchman Can Akkuzu. Zhou Yu recovered from two games down to overcome Ovidiu Ionescu of Romania 8-11, 8-11, 11-1, 11-6, 11-5, 11-3.

Fellow Chinese Yan An, Xu Haidong, Xu Yingbin, Zhou Qihao and Xu Chenhao also found their way through.

Qatar Open, the second stop ITTF World Tour Platinum of the season, featured a total of 28 paddlers from the Chinese team following reigning women's singles world champion Liu Shiwen's withdrawal.

After the German Open, Chinese paddlers have trained in Qatar's capital Doha for a month amid concerns over the spread of coronavirus back in China.

Men's and women's singles qualifying action of the Qatar Open will continue on Wednesday.

Main draw featuring prominent names like Ma Long, Fan Zhendong and Ding Ning will commence on Thursday, while the tournament will curtain down on Sunday.

(For the latest China news, Please follow People's Daily on Twitter and Facebook)
(Web editor: Zhao Tong, Bianji)

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