Ding Ning celebrates her victory (ITTF picture/Remy Gros)

Ding is golden girl in Rio

Author:
Paul Stimpson

Publish date:

Please note - this news article was published more than four years ago. Some of the information contained may no longer be correct.

China’s Ding Ning is the Olympic women’s singles champion, avenging her 2012 final defeat to Chinese compatriot Li Xiaoxia.

Ding fought back from 3-2 down to claim victory by a 4-3 scoreline (11-9, 5-11, 14-12, 9-11, 8-11, 11-7, 11-7) to top the podium, breaking down in tears at the end.

The top seed and world champion told the ITTF website: “This is unbelievable, I can’t believe that I am Olympic champion. I have waited so long for this, it is a dream come true!”

North Korea’s Kim Song I took bronze by beating Japan’s Ai Fukuhara 4-1 (11-7, 11-7, 11-5, 12-14, 11-5).

In the semi-finals, Ding beat Kim 4-1 (11-5, 9-11, 11-6, 11-3, 11-9), while Li thrashed Fukuhara 4-0 (11-4, 11-3, 11-1, 11-1).

Today sees the men’s semi-finals and medal matches, when China’s top seed Ma Long will face Jun Mizutani of Japan at 2pm UK time, followed by Zhang Jike (CHN) versus Vladimir Samsonov (BLR) at 3pm.

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