Fan Zhendong and Chen Meng claimed the respective men's and women's singles titles at the WTT Grand Smash in Singapore ©Getty Images

Two marathon matches concluded the inaugural World Table Tennis (WTT) Grand Smash in Singapore as Fan Zhendong and Chen Meng of China captured the respective men’s and women’s singles titles in thrilling fashion.

Fan and Chen emerged victorious from epic finals that both went the distance on a spectacular last day at the OCBC Arena.

Ma Long and Wang Manyu pushed their Chinese rivals all the way but agonisingly fell short in seven-game classics in Singapore.

In a repeat of the final of last year’s Olympic Games in Tokyo, Fan and Ma produced another memorable match.

Fan won the first two games to take control of the contest before Ma claimed the next three to move ahead.

Ma led 6-1 in the sixth game as he sensed victory before Fan battled back to force a decider and then held his nerve to claim a 11-6, 11-6, 6-11, 9-11, 8-11, 11-8, 11-7 win.

Fan adds the inaugural Singapore Smash to his titles at the World Championships and WTT Cup Finals.

"This is a very meaningful win for me," said Fan.

"It’s my first time playing against Ma Long since Tokyo 2020, and the atmosphere was very good.

"There were some opportunities that I didn’t quite seize in the fourth and fifth games.

"For the sixth game I was just focused on winning one point at a time, because I knew it was important to turn things around.

"Ma Long is someone worthy of respect, both as an opponent and team-mate.

"There are many things I can learn from him in terms of attitude as well as his techniques, and I’ll continue to put in effort to be more like him."

The women’s singles final proved to be just as dramatic with Chen withstanding a stirring fightback from Wang.

Chen looked on course for victory when she took a two-game lead, needing one more to secure the title.

Wang won the next two games to leave the match on a knife edge before Chen prevailed 11-9, 8-11, 11-9, 11-8, 6-11, 9-11, 11-8.

"This is the first ever WTT Grand Smash, so we both really wanted to win it," said Chen, now set to return to world number one next week after her victory.

"Manyu was trailing at some points but she was constantly looking for solutions and putting pressure on me.

"I value this title very much; it’s my first title after the Tokyo Olympics, so this is very encouraging for me.

"I’ve trained hard and prepared well for this event, and I’m really glad my effort has paid off."

It was the first-ever staging of the World Table Tennis Grand Smash which offered as many ranking points as the Olympic Games and World Championships.

Grand Smash competitions form the top tier of WTT's pyramid system and have been likened to Grand Slams in tennis.

They had been due to launch in 2021, before being pushed back to this year.

"Tonight, we’ve witnessed history and I would like to congratulate the first-ever winners of Singapore Smash," Steve Dainton, chief executive of the International Table Tennis Federation, said.

"This is indeed the dawn of a grand new legacy for table tennis. 

"As host of the first-ever WTT Grand Smash, Singapore has truly lived up to its status as a world-class venue for top international sport and entertainment events.

"In the next few years, Singapore Smash will be the iconic extravaganza that signals the start of the annual table tennis season.

"Our hope is for the Singapore Smash to establish its position as one of the key highlights of Singapore’s sporting calendar, and eventually become widely known globally as an event of similar stature as tennis’ Wimbledon or golf’s Masters."