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April 25, 2019

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Ovtcharov stunned but Ma into last 16 at worlds

Tomislav Pucar produced a shocker at the world championships in Budapest yesterday by beating German star Dimitrij Ovtcharov in seven games.

Rallying from 2-3 down, the 58th-ranked Croatian dominated the last two games to overcome the world No. 12 11-9, 8-11, 11-8, 8-11, 2-11, 11-5, 11-7. Ovtcharov, who won one silver and three bronze medals at the Olympics between 2008 and 2016, lost all firepower after taking a lopsided fifth game. China’s Olympic champion Ma Long moved into the last 16 with a 4-1 win over Belarus veteran Vladimir Samsonov, edging closer to his third straight world singles title. In the most watchable women’s singles tie, Chinese Sun Yingsha, ranked 29th in the world, eliminated world No. 7 Mima Ito of Japan 4-1. China’s three-time Olympic champion Ding Ning made short work of Puerto Rican Adriana Diaz 4-0, while teammate Chen Meng cruised past Thai Suthasini Sawettabut 4-1 to join compatriot Wang Manyu in the last 16. Wang beat Romanian Elizabeta Samara 4-2 before China’s world No. 5, Liu Shiwen, whitewashed Britt Eerland of the Netherlands 4-0.


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