Bronze medal contenders, Feng Tianwei and Tie Yana head the order
A bronze medal in the Women’s World Cup, it may not be the supreme achievement but when you consider the might of China, if you are not representing the super power of the sport, it is a most creditable achievement.
It is even more worthy when the third step of the podium has been reserved no less than four times. It is the record of Singapore’s 34-year-old Feng Tianwei; she is named on the entry list for 2020 ITTF Women’s World Cup to be staged in Weihai from Sunday 8th to Tuesday 10th November.
No other player has finished in third position on more occasions; the first was in 2008 in Kuala Lumpur followed by 2013 in Kobe and 2016 in Philadelphia, as well as last year in Chengdu.
Only in 2010 in Kuala Lumpur and in 2015 in Sendai has Feng Tianwei not reached the semi-final round.
The nearest to Feng Tianwei in the third place finish stakes is Hong Kong’s now retired Tie Yana, just one less; she occupied the lowest step on three occasions. In 2002 in Singapore she finished in third position, as she did in 2004 in Xiaoshan and 2011 when once again the tournament was held in Singapore.
One behind in the third place endeavours but when it comes to most unenviable finish of all, Tie Yana is clear of the field. She finished in fourth place on five occasions. She experienced defeat in the bronze medal match in consecutive years in 2005 in Guangzhou, 2006 in Urumqi and 2007 in Chengdu before realising the same fate in 2010 in Kuala Lumpur and 2016 in Philadelphia.
Only one other player has finished in fourth place in the Women’s World Cup on more than one occasion. The name is Feng Tianwei, three times beaten in the bronze medal contrest.
In 2008 on her first appearance in the competition, in 2009 in Guangzhou, in 2011 in Singapore and the following year in Huangshi it was fourth spot.
Third and fourth places, the two celebrated names are very much equals; now in Weihai can Feng Tianwei match Tie Yana in one further respect? In 2008 in Kuala Lumpur Tie Yana was the runner up.
Editor: Ian Marshall