The world’s top table tennis player, Fan Zhendong of China, suffered a stunning defeat at the hands of France’s Alexis Lebrun on Friday, in the World Table Tennis (WTT) Champions tournament being held in Macao.
Pulling off a superb 3-2 victory (11-7, 8-11, 11-5, 5-11, 11-9), the 19-year-old Lebrun has become the first European player to defeat Fan Zhendong since Dimitrij Ovtcharov’s win at the WTT Cup Finals Xinxiang last October, Xinhua reports.
“I feel amazing! He’s the World No. 1. He played very, very good, so I think I did amazing today and reached my peak service game”, Lebrun told reporters afterwards.
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The French player, renowned for his intense pace, has experienced a meteoric rise over the past 15 months, climbing up the rankings from the 1050 slot in January last year to now standing at world number 22.
Lebrun must now face double Olympic champion Ma Long, who has advanced to the semifinals after beating Hugo Calderano of Brazil in straight games 11-7, 11-8, 11-6.
World Table Tennis (WTT) Champions Macao is being played at the Tap Seac Multisport Pavilion. The finals will be held on 23 April.