Impressive earlier in the month at the World Junior Championships in Rabat, Morocco; Killerspin’s Ariel Hsing emerged as the star player at the recently concluded U.S. Nationals staged in Las Vegas from Tuesday 17th to Saturday 21st December 2013.
The 18 year old, who at the London 2012 Olympic Games had given China’s Li Xiaoxia, her toughest examination en route to the precious gold medal and later in the year had become the only North American to win the Intercontinental Cup at the Women’s World Cup, when she succeeded in Huangshi, China in September, replicated that form in Las Vegas.
She departed the state of Nevada with three titles to her credit.
Justifying her top seeded position, she won the Women’s Singles title staving off all challengers in breath taking style. In the latter stages she overcame Angela Guan in the quarter-finals (9-11, 11-4, 11-4, 12-10, 11-4), before accounting for Diane Chen in the penultimate round (11-5, 8-11, 5-11, 16-14, 11-8, 11-7) and Prachi Jha in the final (8-11, 11-6, 11-3, 11-5, 11-8).
A convincing win in the final against a player very much in form; at the semi-final stage, Prachi Jha had beaten Erica Wu, the second seed in four straight games (11-7, 11-7, 11-2, 13-11), after having accounted for Judy Hugh in the round of the last eight (11-9, 11-3, 11-5, 10-12, 7-11, 11-7).
Success in the Women’s Singles event and earlier there had been success for the Killerspin star in both the Mixed Doubles and Women’s Doubles competitions.
In the Mixed Doubles she partnered Timothy Wang to success, the pair beating Adam Hugh and Judy Hugh in the final (11-8, 12-10, 11-6), before in the Women’s Doubles final securing the top prize in harness with Judy Hugh.
The duo clinched gold at the final expense of Diane Chen and Vuong Lan (11-6, 11-8, 11-7).
Three titles for Ariel Hsing, it was two for Timothy Wang; in addition to securing the Mixed Doubles crown he concluded proceedings with the Men’s Singles gold medal in his grasp. The second seed, he overcame surprise finalist Cory Eider to reserve the top step of the medal podium (11-7, 8-11, 11-9, 11-5, 11-7), having at the penultimate stage defeated Kanak Jha (9-11, 11-8, 11-8, 9-11, 8-11, 11-8, 11-5) and one round earlier Shao Yu (11-8, 5-11, 11-9, 6-11, 11-6, 11-3).
Notably Cory Eider had beaten top seed, David Zhuang in the semi-finals (11-9, 9-11, 11-8, 11-8, 11-3), having in the quarter-finals ousted Grant Li (11-8, 10-12, 11-7, 11-8, 11-9).
Success Timothy Wang but he could not match the hat-trick of Ariel Hsing; the Men’s Doubles event was won by Theodore Tran and Jeff Lin; at the final hurdle they accounted for Adam Hugh and Grant Li (11-6, 11-8, 11-7).
No less than 73 events, including veteran and rating competitions; a total of 716 players participated.