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Table Tennis News and Reviews » Blog Archive » Grand Finals - Guo Yan Captures Gold at Volkswagen Pro Tour Grand Finals

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  • 16Dec

    Guo Yan, often the bridesmaid and no place for her in the Chinese team at the Beijing 2008 Olympic Games, won the Women’s Singles title at the Volkswagen Pro Tour Grand Finals in Macau on Sunday 14th December 2008 and in so doing collected US$38,000 and is now the proud owner of a Volkswagen Scirroco Saloon car.

    At the final hurdle she beat compatriot Guo Yue, a player against whom she has not enjoyed the best of fortunes in recent encounters; of their 16 encounters in world ranking events prior to the meeting in Macau, Guo Yue had succeeded on nine occasions.

    Early Career
    However, the majority of the wins recorded by Guo Yan had come in 2002 and 2003 when Guo Yue was still young enough to play in cadet age group category events.

    In 2005 at the Volkswagen 48th World Championships in Shanghai, Guo Yan beat Guo Yue in the semi-finals but in their nine meetings since that date Guo Yan had prevailed on only one occasion; that being semi-final stage of the Swedish Open in November 2007.

    The other eight duels had all gone the way of Guo Yue.

    Speed
    Undoubtedly, the key factor in the victories recorded by the 20 year old was her sheer speed; in Macau it appeared in the early part of the contest that the speed of Guo Yue would win the day.

    However, Guo Yan answered the rapid fire attacks to win the first game. Guo Yue responded to clinch the second game before Guo Yan restored the balance with consistent topspin play from both wings to clinch the third.

    All three games had been decided by the narrowest of margins, the minimal two point margin.

    Dominant
    However, in the fourth game, Guo Yan was dominant. She won the first six points of the game as Guo Yue made mistakes and Guo Yan played error free.

    One game away from victory, Guo Yan stood on the precipice of success at 11-10 in the fifth game; Guo Yue saved the match point and captured the next two points to win the game.

    Memories of Zagreb
    Memories if the 2007 Liebherr World Championships came flooding to the mind; in Zagreb Guo Yue had trailed Li Xiaoxia by three games to one in the final; she recovered to be crowned World champion.

    Could she do the same again in the 2008 Volkswagen Pro Tour Grand Finals? The answer was in the negative. Guo Yan remained focus, at 10-8 she held match point; she made no mistake, converted the point, sank to her knees, bowed to the crowd, shook hands with Guo Yue and the officials before leaving the arena bathed in smiles.

    Scoreline
    Guo Yan won 13-11, 9-11, 15-13, 11-5, 12-14, 11-8 and was crowned the 2008 Volkswagen Pro Tour Grand Finals Women’s Singles champion; it was a well earned victory.

    Source: www.ittf.com

    Posted by ttfan @ 6:50 pm

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