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3 Titles for China and One for Japan at Seamaster 2018 ITTF World Tour Asarel Bulgaria Open

The fourth edition of  Seamaster 2018 ITTF World Tour Asarel Bulgaria Open finished with three titles for China and one for Japan which took place in the crowded hall Arena Assarel in Panagyurishte with award fund of  160, 000  USD. The second in the world rang list in single plays Xu Xin won two titles – single and in couples. The Chinese virtuoso of pen-hold grip won over Kenta Matsudaira from Japan with 4-1 games (10, -10, 8, 6, 4). The match was one of the jewelries of the tournament which is among the 12 of highest category in the world.  

“I am gradually gaining speed. I won the title in Australia and I also won in Bulgaria. I am thankful to my tainers and the Chinese Table Tennis Federation. I also thank to the  marvelous audience here”, Xu said. He was awarded by Ivan Alexandrov, Chairperson of Assarel Bulgaria Open Association.

  Xu earned 250 pints at the world rank list and  19, 000 USD from the award fund. Matsudaira  remained with 125 points and a cheque for  9200 USD.  In the women category, the winner was the Olympic champion and former No. 1 in the world, Ding Ning.  The left hand player overcame the winner in the tournament of category to 21 years in Panagyurishte Wang Yidi with  4-3 (7, -10, -8, 8, -5, 2) in a very disputed match. In the final game, Ding was very persuasive and her specific service remained a mystery for her contester. She also got  250 points and a cheque for 19, 000 USD. The winners were awarded by the Deputy Minister of  youth and Sport, Stoyan Andonov.  

  “I am very happy that I won my first title for the season exactly in Bulgaria. I thank to the spectators. I felt their support all the time. The Match was difficult. Wang’s play was excellent but I mustered up my power in the seventh game and won”, the champion from Panagyurishte said. 

Ma Long and Xu Xin won unexpectedly the title for couples. They overcame the Japanese duo  Masataka Morizono  and Yuya Oshima  with 3-1 (-9, 4, 8, 6).

“It was a great honor for me to play in front of this splendid audience. I am happy that we won in this wonderful hall”, Ma stated after he was awarded by the Human Resources Director at Assarel-Medet JSC, Ana Findzhikova.

 “I dedicate my victory today to my team mate Ma Long who fell off early at the singles but we won the title in couples”,  Xu said.

In the couples for women, Kasumi Ishikawa  and Mima Ito  from Japan defended their title from 2017. At the final, they turned over the result against the Chinese  Liu Gaoyang and Zhang Rui  and won with  3-1 (-10, 7,7, 6).

 “We feel wonderful after this difficult victory. It was honor for us to be part of this tournament”, Ito stated after he received his medal by the Chairperson of the Bulgarian Table Tennis Federation,  Stefan Kitov.

“We are happy that we won again in couples in such a strong contest”, Ishikawa for whom this is the first title in Panagyurishte, where she has two prizes in singles and two in couple,  added.


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