Team USA will aim to match its best Women’s World Team Championship finish of fifth place following a narrow loss against Hong Kong Friday in Dalian, China.
World No. 11 Annie Au led the upset over the third-seeded U.S. with a crucial defeat over Amanda Sobhy in the No. 1 position, defeating the American 11-8, 9-11, 11-4, 10-12, 11-5 after fifty-three minutes.
World No. 21 Joey Chan then sealed Hong Kong’s passage to the semifinals with a win over world No. 14 Olivia Blatchford, 11-5, 8-11, 11-7, 13-11 in forty-one minutes.
“Today was in many ways our final,” said Chris Robertson, Hong Kong Head Coach. “We just wanted to give just one last push. Both Rebecca (Chiu) and I told the girls: just use the whole of the court a bit more. Annie and Joey are both good shot players, and Annie just set the tone. She just attacked. Once she won, it changed the dynamics a little bit: Joey has a chance, and Joey beat Olivia just last week in Shanghai, so you know you’ve got a chance. And she went out there and played—and used the front of the court a little bit more than she’s done earlier in the week.”
The result sends Hong Kong through to the semifinals where they will face top seeds Egypt on Saturday, while the U.S. are consigned to the 5th-8th place playoffs, which will be contested Saturday and Sunday.
Seven seeded New Zealand awaits Team USA on Saturday with the match set to be streamed live at 2pm local time, 2am ET, on wsfwomensteams.com/watch.
A win on Saturday would see the U.S. vie for fifth place against either four seeds Malaysia or eight seeds Canada.