Full-strength Chinese Taipei in town for weekend Davis Cup clash

 

The visiting Chinese Taipei side has arrived for this weekend's Davis Cup Asia/Oceania Zone Group II first round tie at full-strength, with opposing No. 1 Jason Jung taking on debutante Coleman Wong starting at 2pm on Saturday at Victoria Park, followed by Brian Yeung versus Wu Tung-Lin in the second singles.  In the crucial doubles on Sunday at 11am, Jack Wong and Brian Yeung will cross swords with Yang Tsung-Hua and Hsieh Cheng-Peng. The two reverse singles will follow immediately.

Full nominations are as follows: 

Hong Kong, China
Jack Wong, Brian Yeung, Kai Wai Yu, Coleman Wong, Yu Hiu Tung (Captain), and Dr. David Ho (Team Manager).

Chinese Taipei
Jason Jung, Wu Tung-Lin, Yang Tsung-Hua, Tseng Chun-Hsin, Hsieh Cheng-Peng, Lai Chien-Hao (Captain), and Lee Li-Ann (Team Manager).


The tie will be played over two days and will consist of four singles and one doubles rubber. Each rubber will be played to the best of three tiebreak sets with regular ad scoring.

The official draw is as follows:

R1 Coleman Wong (HKG) v Jason Jung (TPE)
R2 Brian Yeung (HKG) v Wu Tung-Lin (TPE)
R3 Jack Wong/Brian Yeung v Yang Tsung-Hua/Hsieh Cheng-Peng (TPE)
R4 Brian Yeung (HKG) v Jason Jung (TPE)
R5 Coleman Wong (HKG) v Wu Tung-Lin (TPE)

 

With only six nations in Asia/Oceania Zone Group II this year – and the other ties being Thailand against Philippines and New Zealand versus Indonesia – the outcome of this weekend's match-up is paramount in determining each side's 2020 Davis Cup prospects.

Coleman Wong, winner of the 2018 Junior Orange Bowl boys' under-14 singles title, will become the youngest Davis Cup player to represent Hong Kong, China, at age 15 years and 99 days, beating the previous record by 14 days held by Ivan Yeh that has stood since 1999.

Yu Hiu Tung is at the helm of the Davis Cup team for the seventh time after making his captaining debut in 2016 when Hong Kong topped Group III to earn promotion. As a player, Yu Hiu Tung has accumulated 15 wins in singles, which puts him third all-time among Hong Kong Davis Cup players, and he also competed in a record 24 ties over eleven years of service. Three years ago, he received the Davis Cup Commitment Award, which is presented by the ITF to players who have shown long-standing dedication to representing their country in this prestigious competition.

"On paper, they have a very strong team, but we will prepare and approach the tie with the right mindset. With support from our home crowd, we will play hard no matter what and give it our best out there," said Captain Yu.

HKTA President, Philip Mok, said, "Chinese Taipei and Hong Kong have met seven times in the Davis Cup and each of those previous ties has been fought with great competitive spirit and the outcomes, at times, separated by only a small margin. I am confident players from both teams will perform to their best abilities and showcase their talent to the world."

Brian Yeung commented, "I’m looking forward playing at home. They have nominated a very strong team, so it will probably take our best effort to have a chance to beat them. But I’m still excited for the opportunity to compete against some of Asia's top players."

Chinese Taipei has nominated its strongest possible side to face Hong Kong that will feature:

        Current ATP Ranking
        Singles    Doubles
Jason Jung        132       353
Wu Tung-Lin           238   374
Yang Tsung-Hua       285   150
Tseng Chun-Hsin       320   982
Hsieh Cheng-Peng       -   65

 

In May, Jung won the Gwangju Challenger and reached the Vancouver Challenger final three months later, but his form has been patchy, exiting in the first round 10 times. He reached a career-high No. 112 on July 30, 2018, a week after beating Sergiy Stakhovsky and Nicolas Mahut to reach the last eight at the ATP 250 Newport, Rhode Island. Jung beat Frances Tiafoe to reach the quarters of the ATP 250 New York Open back in February this year.

Jung, 30, made his Davis Cup debut in 2017 in Group I where he lost to Wu Yibing (CHN) and Kwok Soon-Woo (KOR). After Chinese Taipei was relegated to Group II in 2018, he did not play in his team's 3-2 loss against Lebanon in the first round but picked up his first win in singles against Iran in the ensuing relegation playoff.

Wu Tung-Lin, 21, whose only Davis Cup call-up was in Group I in 2017 when he lost to Chung Hyeon (KOR), is currently at a career-high ATP Ranking of No. 238. So far this year, the 21-year-old managed to win his maiden M15 pro circuit title and then proceeded to reach the Santiago Challenger final and Seoul Challenger semifinal.

Yang Tsung-Hua, 28, made his Davis Cup debut in 2008, the year he became the ITF Junior World Champion. He has played 15 ties, with 13 coming at the Group I level, totaling a win-loss record of 8-16 in singles and 3-4 in doubles. His finest performance came in 2010 when he took three points against Philippines in the Group I relegation playoff during which he beat Treat Huey in singles, teamed up with Yi Chu-Huan for the crucial doubles against Huey and Cecil Mamiit, and then the coup de grace, a five-set win over Mamiit for the tie-clincher.

Yang peaked at No. 164 in singles in 2012 and No. 127 in doubles earlier this season. He also has 11 career Futures singles titles. Between 2015-2018, he won 5 Challenger and 2 Futures doubles titles together with Hsieh Cheng-Peng. The pair also won the boys' doubles title at the Australian Open and Wimbledon in 2008.

Hsieh Cheng-Peng, 27, a southpaw, is a doubles specialist with 19 Challenger and 16 Futures titles to his name. So far this season, he has won 4 Challenger doubles partnering Christopher Rungkat (INA). As a junior, he captured boys' doubles titles at the Australian Open (twice), Wimbledon, and US Open. He has a current ATP Ranking of No. 65 in doubles.

Tseng Chun-Hsin, 18, captured the boys' singles titles at Roland Garros and Wimbledon to finish 2018 as the ITF Junior World Champion. In 2019, he reached the Prague Challenger men's final and is at a career-high ATP Ranking of No. 320 in singles. He made his Davis Cup debut against Lebanon in Group II last year in a dead rubber singles.

In terms of players' head-to-head, Jack Wong lost to Yang Tsung-Hua, 6-4, 6-1, in the first round of the 2015 Chinese Taipei F2 Futures. Against Wu Tung-Lin, Wong won their Macau ITF G5 Junior Championship semifinal encounter when Wu retired after he lost the first set 6-3.

Hong Kong last competed in Group I in 1995 when Sven Koehler and Thorsten Poelzl, both unranked in ATP singles at the time, fell 5-0 against then ATP No. 647 Chen Chih-Jung's Chinese Taipei in that year's relegation playoff. Chen won a gold medal in mixed doubles together with Wang Shi-Ting at the World University Games in 1995 and then added a bronze in men's doubles with Benny Lin at the Asian Games in 1996.

 

Head-to-Head

The two sides have met 7 times in Davis Cup competition, with Hong Kong winning the first two encounters in 1984 and 1990. Chinese Taipei have prevailed in the most recent five face-offs.

In 1984, Kelvin Ng defeated debutante Liu Chung-Hsing, 6-3, 7-5, 6-2, in the fifth and deciding rubber to cement Hong Kong's maiden Davis Cup victory since it first entered Davis Cup competition in 1970.

In the Group II semifinal in 1990, Mark Bailey (No. 818) and Colin Grant (No. 1042) won both their singles rubbers against the unranked duo of Lien Yu-Hui and Liu Chung-Hsing to score a 4-1 win over Chinese Taipei.

In the Group II final in 1991, Michael Walker (ATP No. 585) beat Lien Yu-Hui (ATP No. 854) in the first reverse singles to extend the tie to a fifth and deciding rubber, 2-2. Then, 19-year-old Chen Chih-Jung, ranked No. 1098 and with only a dead rubber singles under his belt prior to this tie, beat Colin Grant, who was unranked that year, 7-5, 6-3, 6-3, to give Chinese Taipei a 3-2 victory.

In 1995, a Hong Kong side headed by Sven Koehler and Thorsten Poelzl lost 5-0 to a Chen Chih-Jung led Chinese Taipei in the Group I relegation playoff. Hong Kong was relegated to Group II and has yet to return to Group I after that defeat.

In 2003, Hong Kong and Chinese Taipei last met in the Group II Final in Kaohsiung where Jimmy Wang (ATP No. 211) beat Yu Hiu Tung (ATP No. 1155) to give his team a 1-0 lead before Lu Yen-Hsun (ATP No. 205) saw off an unranked Wayne Wong to double that advantage. Lu and Wang then combined to beat John Hui and Brian Hung in the doubles to seal the tie. Wang went on to reach No. 85 in the world in 2006, while Lu peaked at a career-best No. 33 in 2010.

 

Results

1984 – Eastern Zone First Round, Chinese Taipei. HKG d. TPE 3-2

R1 Wu Chang-Rung (TPE) d. Kelvin Ng (HKG) 6-2 6-3 5-7 6-3
R2 Mark Bailey (HKG) d. Liu Chung-Hsing (TPE) 3-6 6-3 3-6 6-1 6-4
R3 Kelvin Ng/Randall King (HKG) d. Wu/Liu (TPE) 6-1 6-4 4-6 8-6
R4 Wu Chang-Rung (TPE) d. Mark Bailey (HKG) 6-4 5-7 6-2 6-2
R5 Kelvin Ng (HKG) d. Liu Chung-Hsing (TPE) 6-3 7-5 6-2

 

1990 – Asia/Oceania Zone Group II Semifinal, Hong Kong. HKG d. TPE 4-1

R1 Mark Bailey (HKG) d. Liu Chung-Hsing (TPE) 1-6 6-3 7-6(5) 6-0
R2 Colin Grant (HKG) d. Lien Yu-Hui (TPE) 3-6 7-6(3) 6-2 6-1
R3 Lien/Liu (TPE) d. Rolf Harrison/Pang Lui (HKG) 4-6 6-3 7-6(5) 3-6 8-6
R4 Mark Bailey (HKG) d. Lien Yu-Hui (TPE) 7-5 6-3 6-2
R5 Colin Grant (HKG) d. Liu Chung-Hsing (TPE) 6-3 6-4

 

1991 – Asia/Oceania Zone Group II Final, Chinese Taipei. TPE d. HKG 3-2

R1 Lien Yu-Hui (TPE) d. Colin Grant (HKG) 6-2 6-2 6-3
R2 Michael Walker (HKG) d. Chen Chih-Jung (TPE) 6-4 6-3 6-3
R3 Lien/Chen (TPE) d. Michael Walker/Mark Bailey (HKG) 6-4 6-3 6-3
R4 Michael Walker (HKG) d. Lien Yu-Hui (TPE) 7-6(6) 6-4 6-4
R5 Chen Chih-Jung (TPE) d. Colin Grant (HKG) 7-5 6-3 6-3

 

1995 – Asia/Oceania Zone Group I Relegation Playoff, Hong Kong. TPE d. HKG 5-0

R1 Tsai Chia-Yen (TPE) d. Sven Koehler (HKG) 6-3 2-6 6-4 6-3
R2 Chen Chih-Jung (TPE) d. Thorsten Poelzl (HKG) 7-6(5) 4-6 3-6 6-4 6-1
R3 Chen Chih-Jung/Hung Chiao-Hsy (TPE) d. Koehler/Poelzl (HKG) 2-6 6-2 6-3 6-7(6) 6-3
R4 Chen Wei-Ju (TPE) d. Sven Koehler (HKG) 6-1 1-6 6-4
R5 Tsai Chia-Yen (TPE) d. John Hui (HKG) 6-4 6-1

 

1998 – Asia/Oceania Zone Group II First Round, Chinese Taipei. TPE d. HKG 3-2

R1 Tsai Chia-Yen (TPE) d. Chris Lai (HKG) 6-2 6-2 6-3
R2 Melvin Tong (HKG) d. Chen Chih-Jung (TPE) 2-6 6-1 6-4 2-6 8-6
R3 Chen Chih-Jung/Benny Lin (TPE) d. Chris Lai/Stephen So (HKG) 6-3 6-1 6-1
R4 Melvin Tong (HKG) d. Tsai Chia-Yen (TPE) 6-7(4) 6-4 6-1 6-0
R5 Chen Chih-Jung (TPE) d. Chris Lai (HKG) 6-4 6-2 6-0

 

2002 – Asia/Oceania Zone Group II First Round, Hong Kong. TPE d. HKG 4-1

R1 Michael Brown (HKG) d. Cheng Wei-Jen (TPE) 4-6 6-1 7-6(4) 6-1
R2 Jimmy Wang (TPE) d. Chris Numbers (HKG) 6-1 6-2 6-4
R3 Jimmy Wang/Liu Chia-Che (TPE) d. John Hui/Melvin Wong (HKG) 6-1 6-3 3-6 6-1
R4 Jimmy Wang (TPE) d. Michael Brown (HKG) 6-3 6-4 6-2
R5 Cheng Wei-Jen (TPE) d. John Hui (HKG) 6-2 7-6(5)

 

2003 – Asia/Oceania Zone Group II Final, Chinese Taipei. TPE d. HKG 4-1

R1 Jimmy Wang (TPE) d. Yu Hiu Tung (HKG) 6-0 6-4 6-1
R2 Lu Yen-Hsun (TPE) d. Wayne Wong (HKG) 6-4 6-1 6-3
R3 Lu Yen-Hsun/Jimmy Wang (TPE) d. John Hui/Brian Hung (TPE) 6-3 6-2 6-4
R4 Chen Ti (TPE) d. Yu Hiu Tung (HKG) 6-4 6-0
R5 Wayne Wong (HKG) d. Cheng Wei-Jen (TPE) 6-1 6-2

 

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