December Rankings Are Out: Xu Xin Again
(by Steve Hopkins)
The ITTF has published the December Rankings. While the Men’s Top 10 are all the same, there has been some reshuffling in regard to order. Xu Xin tops the list again. In November, it was Fan Zhendong with the narrowest of leads – this time it is Xu Xin with 16600 in first and Fan Zhendong just behind with 16150. Ma Long and Lin Gaoyuan have swapped positions with Ma Long moving up one slot to No. 3. Tomokazu Harimoto and Hugo Calderano hold their positions at No. 5 and No. 6. Taiwan’s Lin Yun-Ju moves up three spots to No. 7 and Liang Jingkun, Mattias Falck, and Timo Boll round out the final three spots.
USA’s Kanak Jha, the top ranked player in North America, holds on to his position at No. 26. Canada’s Jeremy Hazin is No. 141, USA’s Nikhil Kumar is No. 174, and USA’s Kai Zhang is No. 191. Three Brazilian players top the Latin America region with Hugo Calderano (No. 6), Gustavo Tsuboi (No. 41), and Vitor Ishiy (No. 59). Puerto Rican players Brian Afanador and Daniel Gonzalez are No. 80 and No. 142.
A few big movers in the Top 50 include Takuya Jin a 26-year-old Japanese player who is in the Top 50 for the first time at No. 44. Jaehyun An, a 20-year-old Korean player is also in the Top 50 for the first time, moving to No. 40 all the way from No. 62. Austria’s Daniel Habesohn has moved back up to No. 32 (he spent most of 2019 in the 20s but had dipped to No. 43 last month). And Zhao Zihao, a 22-year-old from China, is up 12 spots to No. 29
Chen Meng continues to hold on to her No. 1 position in the Women’s Rankings. She is followed by Sun Yingsha and Liu Shiwen. Last month the first six positions in the Women’s list were all from China – this month the outstanding play of Japan’s Mima Ito has catapulted her up to the No. 4 position. Zhu, Wang, and Ding hold the next three positions. Taiwan’s Cheng I-Ching moves into the Top 10 at No. 8. Feng Tianwei of Singapore and Kasumi Ishikawa round out the top 10.
The US Women’s Team is now No. 10 in the Women’s Team Rankings. Lily Zhang moved up 7 spots to No. 26 to become the top ranked player from North America. Teammates Jenifer Wu and Amy Wang are No. 27 and No. 174. Canadians Mo Zhang and Alicia Cote are at No. 27 and No. 162. Puerto Rico’s Adriana Diaz moved up two spots to No. 22 and remains the top ranked player in this hemisphere. Bruna Takahashi of Brazil is No. 49 and the younger Diaz sister, Melanie Diaz, has moved up to No. 62.
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