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Monday, 6th August 2012
In Japan Sports News,

Women?s table tennis team guaranteed first Olympics medal

The Japanese women’s table tennis team have secured their first Olympic podium position since the sport was introduced to the Games in Seoul in 1988.

Already guaranteed silver after taking out Singapore in the semi-finals on Sunday (August 5th), they will go on to compete against either the Republic of Korea or reigning champions China in the finals.

Japan graced through to the last stage of the competition after a 3-1 victory over Singapore at London’s ExCel centre.

Ai Fukuhara was the first of the Japanese women to take down their semi-final opponents, beating Feng Tianewi, who recently knocked Japan’s Kasumi Ishikawa out of the singles competition.

Ishikawa enjoyed her own success after trumping Wang Yuegu for the second time in the Games, having crushed her hopes of a singles spot on the medals podium.

The 19-year-old thrashed her Singapore opponent in straight games and later teamed up with Sayaka Hirano to beat Wang and Li Jiawei 3-0 in the doubles event.

Commenting on the team’s aim during the Games, Ishikawa said: “The whole team are working hard to achieve a medal. We are here and need to get a medal.

They face stiff competition if China goes through on Tuesday, as the country has not failed to take a medal in the sport since it was introduced to the Games lineup.

China crushed The Netherlands 3-0 during the quarter-finals clash, losing just one game in the entire match.

Japan overcame their German rivals to take a spot in the quarters and will no doubt be bracing themselves for a challenging battle for gold.

Currently, Japan is 15th on the medals table with two gold, 12 silver and 13 bronze.

Although they could trump the women’s table tennis competition, they have no chance of overtaking China on the table as they have secured an incredible 63 medals.

Posted by Mark Smith

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