The Chinese team had to face defeat in the mixed doubles event of the table tennis match in the ongoing Tokyo Olympics. Jun Mizutani and Mima Ito of Japan defeated Xu Xin and Liu Shiwen of China in the final. This is the first time since 2004 that a country other than China has won a gold medal in any table tennis event.
In 2004, Ryu Seung-min of South Korea won the gold medal in men’s singles. Since then, China has dominated the men’s and women’s singles, men’s doubles, women’s doubles, men’s team, and women’s team in table tennis games. China has won gold in all these events for the last 17 years.
Table tennis was included in the Olympics for the first time in 1988. Since then, China has won a total of 54 medals in this sport, including 28 gold, 18 silver, and 8 bronze. South Korea is at the number two spot in the world and has won only 18 medals including 3 Gold, 3 Silver, and 12 Bronze.
How seriously the Olympic Games are taken in China can be gauged from the fact that Xu Xin and Liu Shiwen wept after missing out on gold in mixed doubles. They also apologized to the fans for winning the silver medal. Even while going to the medal podium, these players were seen as emotional.
China has always dominated sports such as table tennis and diving. The gold medal is always expected from China in these sports. China’s dominance in these games can be gauged from the fact that silver is also seen as a failure.