Table tennis young guns make their mark

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Anna Harrington / AAP News

A year after trying to build their profiles via a table tennis YouTube channel in Melbourne lockdown, teenage sensations Finn Luu and Nicholas Lum are making a name for themselves on the tables of Birmingham.

Both 17, the pair were keen to raise table tennis’ profile, while hoping they might pocket a bit of cash at the same time.

If they keep up their current form in Birmingham, Luu and Lum might add a few more subscribers to the 4,640 who follow ‘Flickpong’.

“We just came together during lockdown,” Luu told AAP.

“We were together a lot, all of us in Melbourne in the training centre.

“We had a lot of time so we thought we might as well just like try something. YouTube was blowing up.

“In our off training time, we try to post a few videos, grow the sport, grow our names.”

On Thursday Luu, 17, did just that as he cruised into the final 16 of the mixed doubles with 20-year-old partner Liu Yangzi, beating Scotland’s Colin Dalgleish and Rebecca Plaistow 3-0.

“Coming into it we’re probably not expected to get a medal but we’re always trying to do our best so hopefully we’ll be in contention,” Luu, who was already in the singles round of 16, said.

Lum, 17 and 36-year-old Min Hyung Jee came back from a game down to beat South Africa’s Theo Cogill and Zodwa Maphanga 3-1.

Luu and Lum then reached the men’s doubles round of 16, beating Ghana’s Derek Abrefa and Emmanuel Commey 3-0.

Fellow young gun Dillon Chambers and Yan Xin beat Ghana’s Emmanuel Asante and Emmanuel Ofori 3-0.

Min Hyung Jee backed up her mixed doubles victory by progressing to the women’s singles round of 16, beating the Maldives’ Aishath Rafa Nazim 4-0.

Liu beat Malaysia’s Ying Ho 4-3 in a seven-game thriller and the great Jian Fang Lay cruised past Canada’s Katherine Morin 4-0.

Lay and Yan Xin were knocked out of the mixed doubles in the round of 64.

Para table tennis stars Lina Lei and Yang Qiang are both through to opposite semi-finals of the women’s singles 6-10 classes after finishing top of their respective groups with perfect winning records.

Lin Ma reached the men’s 8-10 classes semi-finals by topping his group but Junjian Chen failed to qualify in the men’s 3-5 classes.

Dani di Toro and Amanda Tscharke failed to qualify in the 3-5 classes after finishing third and fourth respectively in their groups.

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