TOKYO (Japan): China’s Chen Meng defeated her compatriot Sun Yingsha 4-2 to win the women’s singles Olympic table tennis gold on Thursday.
World number one Chen overcame her opponent 9-11 11-6 11-4 5-11 11-4 11-9 as China continued its incredible run of winning every women’s singles gold medal in Olympic history.
Chen fired herself up with a mighty yell each time she scored, while the 20-year-old Sun in contrast silently gave a reserved fist pump as she tried to get back into the contest.
“It’d be wrong to say that I don’t have any regrets, but my future is bright ahead,” said world number three Sun.
Japan’s Mima Ito won the bronze medal by beating Singapore’s Yu Mengyu 4-1, earning Japan’s first-ever medal in the Olympic women’s singles, after she secured gold in the mixed doubles.
“Out of a hundred, I’m 99% frustrated. It’s very close to a hundred… I’m happy but full of regrets at the same time,” Ito told reporters.
In the men’s singles, China’s Fan Zhendong won 4-3 against Taiwan’s Lin Yun Ju, while defending champion Ma Long beat Germany’s Dimitrij Ovtcharov by the same score to reach Friday’s final.
The results mean China provided all four finalists in the showpiece matches at the Tokyo Games in the women’s and men’s singles events as they have at every Games since 2008.
China have long been the dominant force in the sport, especially in the women’s singles where the Asian powerhouse has never been beaten to the Olympic title.
Earlier on Thursday, world number three Sun had overwhelmed Ito in the semi-finals with an 11-3 11-9 11-6 11-4 victory, while Chen had beaten Yu 11-6 11-8 11-7 11-6.