Eight Chinese paddlers knocked out at preliminary in ITTF Qatar Open

Source: Xinhua| 2020-03-05 11:02:51|Editor: huaxia

DOHA, March 4 (Xinhua) -- Xu Chenhao came out the sole Chinese paddler making the men's main draw through preliminary rounds at the ITTF World Tour Platinum Qatar Open here on Wednesday.

The 25-year-old beat Austrian player Stefan Fegerl, fellow Chinese Zhao Zihao and Adam Saudi of Hungary, all in 4-1, to set up a round of 32 matchup with Patrick Franziska of Germany on Thursday evening.

Xu's established teammate Zhou Yu, 28, who rallied past compatriot Yan An in full sets in the preliminary second round, was shown the door out at round three by 44-year-old Belarus veteran Vladimir Samsonov, 11-7, 9-11, 11-8, 13-11, 11-6.

Other Chinese male paddlers failing to make the main draw on Wednesday included youngster Xu Haidong who lost to English paddler Paul Drinkhall, Xu Yingbin beaten in four straight sets by Slovakia's Wang Yang, Zhou Qihao who suffered a 4-2 defeat to Slovenian Darko Jorgic, all in round two, and Xiang Peng ousted by Croatian Andrej Gacina 4-3 in the third preliminary round.

The only casualty of China in the women's preliminary was 26-year-old Liu Fei, who lost to national teammate Zhang Rui 4-0 in the third round. Qian Tianyi, Sun Mingyang and Gu Yuting all made through to the women's singles main draw.

Qatar Open is the second stop of the ITTF World Tour Platinum events in the 2020 season, featuring a total of 28 paddlers from the Chinese table tennis team following reigning world champion Liu Shiwen's withdrawal.

Amid the COVID-19 epidemic, the Chinese players have decided to donate all the prize money if they win at the 400,000 U.S. dollars Qatar Open to support China's anti-coronavirus effort.