HALMSTAD, SWEDEN - The unified Korea women’s squad at the World Team Table Tennis Championships crashed out in its first fixture, losing to Japan 3-0 in Friday’s semifinals.
The Korean team was formed on the spot here through an agreement between the federations of both North and South Korea and the International Table Tennis Federation on Thursday. The two nations’ teams had been scheduled to play each other in the quarterfinals but formed a combined team that was handed a bye into the semifinals.
Japan’s victory guaranteed the women would leave Sweden with at least a silver medal for the third straight time. In the final, the Japanese will play the winners of the China-Hong Kong semifinal.
Mima Ito defeated Jeon Ji Hee 11-2, 11-8, 11-9, while Kasumi Ishikawa outlasted Kim Song I 11-4, 6-11, 11-8, 11-13, 16-14 and Miu Hirano beat Yang Ha Eun 11-4, 11-5, 9-11, 11-6.