Japanese Table Tennis Players Return Victorious

Japanese table tennis players return victorious

Two Japanese table tennis players have returned home one day after clinching their first titles at the World Tour Grand Finals.

Tomokazu Harimoto arrived at Narita Airport, near Tokyo, from South Korea on Monday.

The 15-year-old Harimoto set another record on Sunday. The world's fifth-ranked player became the youngest- ever winner of a singles title in the grand finals when he beat a player from China.

Harimoto told reporters at the airport that the victory has finally started to sink in. He said most of the players at the grand finals will take part in the 2020 Tokyo Olympics, so he thinks the title is as valuable as an Olympic gold.

He added that there is much room for improvement, and that he will keep on working hard.

Also on Monday, fans welcomed Mima Ito home at Kansai Airport in Osaka Prefecture.

Ito and Hina Hayata defeated their Chinese rivals in the women's doubles final on Sunday. This is the Japanese pair's first win in the grand finals.

Ito said she was just happy about her first win in the event. She also said this has been a great year because she has had a variety of experiences in table tennis.