Table Tennis: China women thrash Germany to claim gold

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RIO DE JANEIRO (Reuters) - China continued to show why they are the goliath of table tennis on Tuesday with a dominant win over Germany to take the women’s team gold, the champions dropping only one game in the final.

In a 3-0 whitewash that lasted just one-and-a-half hours, China’s Li Xiaoxia and Liu Shiwen utilized booming smashes and prodigious spin shots to overcome Han Ying and Petrissa Solja of Germany without dropping a game in the opening singles matches.

Germany showed a little resistance in the doubles match when they took the third game but Liu and her partner Ding Ning soon regained control to complete a resounding victory.

Despite the lop-sided manner of the defeat, the silver represents the best ever result for Germany in women’s table tennis after the country had failed to win a medal of any kind until they defeated Japan in a four-hour marathon in the semis.

China has won 26 out of 30 golds awarded in table tennis since the sport joined the Olympic program in 1988, claiming gold and silver in both singles events in Rio so far and are favorites to win the men’s team title.

15-year-old Mima Ito of Japan became the youngest ever Olympic table tennis medalist after she helped her team to clinch the bronze medal earlier in the day, easing to victory over Singapore’s Feng Tianwei to secure a 3-1 win.

Reporting by Brenda Goh; Editing by Neil Robinson/John O’Brien