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    • Who Will Be Crowned 2016 World Cup Champion!?

      After the dominant display from Ma Long at the recent Rio Olympic Games, where he barely lost a set, most thought him untouchable. Fan Zhendong clearly didn't take notice of this however, completely dominating the grand slam champion in the China open final 4-0. After this recent success it's hard to see who can stop the young Chinese juggernaut who has a point to prove after not being selected for Rio.

      The stiffest competition will no doubt come in the form of Fan Zhendong's Chinese teammate and world number 3 Xu Xin who also has a point to prove after he lost in the Olympic team final to Jun Mizutani. And what better way to show that he Is back to his best then by winning his second World Cup. A title he first won back in 2013 in Verviers, Belgium.

      Third seed and European number one Dimitrij Ovtcharov, is another player who is sure to be extremely motivated to win. He has never won a major tournament and will still be feeling disappointed after losing to fellow European Vladimir Samsonov in the Olympic quarter final. A match most expected to see him to win. He may even get his chance for revenge as the 2009 champion Samsonov enters as 5th seed. The Belorussian is the last non Chinese player to win a World Cup title and also reached the final in 2013 so will be feeling confident of doing well again.

      Other potential dark horses are seeds 4 and 6 Wong Chun Ting and Jeoung Youngsik who are both in top form and very dangerous opponents for any player in the draw. On a more disappointing note there are no Japanese players entered into the competition. Perhaps most disappointing is the withdrawal from World number 5 Jun Mizutani. Mizutani has, as previously mentioned, just beaten Xu Xin and was perhaps the best chance for a non Chinese player to claim the title.

      So the tournament, like most other majors, comes down to the question can anyone stop China's dominance or will it be a predictable China 1, 2 again? Whatever happens there are some intriguing potential match ups in what promises to be a very exciting tournament Full tournament seeding can be seen below:

      01) Fan Zhendong
      02) Xu Xin
      03) Dimitrij Ovtcharov
      04) Wong Chun Ting
      05) Vladimir Samsonov
      06) Jeoung Youngsik
      07) Lee Sangsu
      08) Simon Gauzy
      09) Tiago Apolonia
      10) Stefan Fegerl
      11) Alexander Shibaev
      12) Bastian Steger
      13) Kristian Karlsson
      14) Par Gerell
      15) Gao Ning
      16) Joao Monteiro
      17) Quadri Aruna
      18) Hugo Calderano
      19) Yijun Feng
      20) David Powell

      Check out our latest podcast with number 17 seed Quadri Aruna below:

      For all the latest news, results and videos from the Men's World Cup click here.

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      Written by: Thomas Jeffcott
      Comments 4 Comments
      1. shinshiro's Avatar
        shinshiro -
        Why Ma Long is not going to participate?
      1. schybbe's Avatar
        schybbe -
        Fzd is on a roll. Hard to see who can stop him
      1. Lucas Nascimento's Avatar
        Lucas Nascimento -
        Quote Originally Posted by shinshiro View Post
        Why Ma Long is not going to participate?
        Good question. Maybe to take a break after the defeat at the China Open, or maybe just because Liu Guoliang decided to give XX and FZD the chance this time...
      1. edgy's Avatar
        edgy -
        Quote Originally Posted by shinshiro View Post
        Why Ma Long is not going to participate?

        fatigue, not being able to regularly practice since rio, etc.
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