(by Steve Hopkins)
USA Table Tennis conducted its fifth Challenge Series event last week. The event matched US Women Olympic Team Member Huijing Wang versus one of USA’s top juniors, Michael Tran. Table tennis is one of the few sports where men and women compete against each other in major tournaments using the same rating system – and this is the fourth week in a row where this Series matched a women’s team member against a men’s team member and in the battle of the sexes, the score is now even at 2 and 2.
Huijing was pretty dominant from the beginning, pressing the pace and driving her attacks deep into Tran. The first game went to Huijing 11-4. Picking up the action at 8-8 in the second game, Huijing won two points outright off of her service, and then opened with a heavy topspin winner to log her third point in a row for the win. The third game also went to Huijing – and early lead and then coasting to an 11-6 win. The fourth game was more of the same – with strong serves, overpowering spin for her topspin openings shots, and powerful well-placed blocks. Huijing 4-0 over Tran.
Butterfly is now up 4-1. This week, the event moves to the ICC Club in Northern California where Nikhil Kumar will represent Team Butterfly and Xin Zhou will represent Team Nittaku.
*Follow the link below to watch the match at USATT.org.
Sign up to stay In the Loop with Butterfly table tennis products, table tennis news, upcoming tournaments, tournament results and more.