1. Li Jiao - Netherlands
|Li Jiao at the WTTC|
In this year's world championships she scored 2 points in the Netherlands 3-2 loss to Japan in the quarterfinals, with 5 set wins over Kasumi Ishikawa and Sayaka Hirano. Exhibiting an impressive arsenal of serves, she also commands excellent control on her backhand, impeccable placement and a powerful forehand attack.
2. Ni Xia Lian - Luxembourg
|51 year old Ni Xia Lian|
Her penhold style and twiddling combination of short and long pimpled rubbers caused havoc for many of her opponents with her being able to control and vary the pace and spin to an incredibly frustrating level. She reached a peak World Ranking of 8th in 2002 and still remains 63rd this month (Oct 2014), well within the top 100 international players in the world.
3. Jian Fang Lay - Australia
|Australia's Jian Fang Lay|
With a reputation for lightning fast penhold twiddling between her inverted attacking rubber and long pimple rubber, Lay is able to alter the ball spin and speed to extremes, combining the slow and awkward long pimple returns with spinny or high paced topspin strokes with her normal rubber. This has caused her to continue to compete at the highest international level.
4. Li Chunli - New Zealand
|Li Chunli - New Zealand|
Li was the first Commonwealth Games Champion in 2002, winning a gold in the singles over Li Jiawei of Singapore. She also won medals in the teams, doubles and mixed doubles events. She retired after the 2004 Athens games, but returned and qualified 2nd at the 2012 Olympic Games Qualification in Oceania. She was Oceania Cup champion in 2012 and still holds a World Ranking today of 144th. With a rapid penhold, short pimple attacking game, Li Chunli plays traditionally using the same side for all her backhand strokes. With a strong focus on service and fast drives and smashes, Li proves she still has the speed to keep up with many opponents out on the table. She was part of the team which won 3rd division at this year's World Team Championships.
5. Krisztina Toth - Hungary
|Krisztina Toth - Hungary|
Toth earned over 20 European Championship medals in her career and had class in her game style, often resorting to creative shots and world class lobbing. She could in style terms be compared as a female Jan-Ove Waldner, with her masterful control and superb looping game.
A wealth of experience among these 5 champions of table tennis and all the respect in the world for their level of skill, commitment and passion to the sport. We salute you!