SHANGHAI, May 3(Xinhuanet)-- Chinese paddlers move closer to another clean sweep of title at the table tennis world championships as the seven-day tournament is halfway from the end.
Jan-Ove Waldner of Sweden was eliminated by Belarussian Vladimir Samsonov from the men's singles event, while Olympic and world champion Wang Nan fell a victim to unknown South Korean MoonHyun Jung in a seven-set women's singles thriller.
To the disappointment of a sell-out Chinese crowd, the 40-year-old Swede was beaten 11-4, 15-13, 12-10, 11-7 in the thirdround.
Dubbed"Old Wa" in China, Waldner was a household name because of his long-time confrontation with Chinese paddlers. The first player to become a"Grand Slam" winner of the Olympic, world championships and World Cup titles, Waldner has been causing troubles to Chinese since the 1980s.
With guile and guts Moon used her lethal forehand attacks and placement shots to subdue Wang 14-12, 4-11, 11-6, 5-11, 14-12, 12-14, 11-8.
In apparent disappointment, Wang refused to speak to reporters after the match.
Despite Wang's shock exit, China still has six representatives in the last 16. World number one Zhang Yining whitewashed Yan Chimei of San Marino 4-0 and Niu Jianfeng eased past Hungary's Pota Georgina with an identical score.
Tie Yana from Hong Kong, China, was awarded a walkover win after her Hungarian opponent Csilla Batorfi stormed out of the court over a controversial service call.
Batorfi, former European top player and currently ranked 54th in the world, flew into a rage as the umpire called her opening serve illegal in the opening game.
The Hungarian demanded to have the umpire replaced. When chiefumpire Sun Qilin turned down the request, Batorfi packed up and left the court.
In men's singles, China's three-time World Cup winner Ma Lin and Wang Hao were both stretched to seven sets before reaching thelast 16.
Their fellow Chinese Wang Liqin, Kong Linghui and Hao Shuai hada comfortable passage.
Unable to cope with Czech Petr Korbel's backhand loops, Ma trailed 1-0, 2-1 and 3-2 down in sets. But the Chinese penhold attacker, cheered on by the electrified home fans, fought his way back afterwards and closed out the match 13-11, 7-11, 12-10, 7-11,13-11, 7-11, 9-11.
Wang Hao, the Athens Olympic silver medalist, outlasted Cheung Yuk from Hong Kong, China 9-11, 11-5, 12-10, 11-6, 9-11, 7-11, 11-8.
"Ma and Wang played their normal games today," said Liu Guoliang, head coach of the Chinese men's team.
Liu, who was sent off the court on Monday for speaking during amatch, was again dismissed for a gesture which was believed to give Ma instructions.
"Maybe I'm still too young as a coach," said the former world champion."I lack experience in courtside coaching."
Spain's He Zhiwen, who ousted defending champion Werner Schlager on Tuesday, continued his impressive run here by beating the defensive skills of Greek Panagiotis Gionis in seven sets.
China is already assured of the mixed doubles gold after its all-conquering pairs swept the semi-final slots.
In men's doubles, three Chinese pairs reached the last four. Athens Olympic champions Chen Qi/Ma Lin will take on German duo Timo Boll/Christian Suss in the semi-finals. And defending champions Wang Liqin/Yan Sen have to vie for a final berth with teammates Kong Linghui/Wang Hao.
Wang Nan still has a chance to match legendary Chinese Deng Yaping's record of winning 18 world and Olympic titles. The 27-year-old and Zhang Yining reached the doubles semi-finals, where they face Tie Yana/Zhang Rui of Hong Kong, China. The othersemi-final is an all-Chinese affair with Guo Yue/Niu Jianfeng playing Bai Yang and Guo Yan. Enditem