Yadira Silva who gradually asserted her authority to beat Jessica Yamada
Photo By: Ricardo Ramos
2011 ITTF-Latin America Cup
The Dominican Republic’s Wu Xue, the no.1 seed, and Mexico’s Yadira Silva, the no.4 seed, were the two players to emerge successful at the semi-final stage of the Women’s Singles event at the ITTF/Latin American Cup in Rio de Janeiro on Saturday 19th February 2011.
Wu Xue beat Paula Medina in six games (8-11, 11-8, 5-11, 11-5, 11-7, 12-10) before Yadira Silva overcame Brazil’s Jessica Yamada in a full distance seven games duel (7-11, 11-9, 6-11, 11-9, 6-11, 11-5, 11-0).
Both semi-finals were hard fought duels and both followed a very similar path.
The younger and lower ranked player made a fine start before the more senior adversary delved into the experience bank to win the day.
Problems Receiving Service
“I didn’t receive service well, that was the main problem for me”, said Wu Xue after beating Paula Medina. “My feeling for the ball was not so good; recently I’ve not played many matches in such a big hall and it’s been difficult for me adapting to the conditions.”
A big hall most certainly, the Maracanăzinho Indoor Arena holds boasts some 7,000 seats and is basically Little Maracana being next door the Maracana Stadium, noted as one of the largest if not the largest football stadium in the world.
On one occasion some 200,000 spectators packed into the Maracana to watch Brazil play football!
Strong from Backhand
However, credit must go to Paula Medina, she tested Wu Xue.
“Paula was very strong from the backhand”, added Wu Xue. “It was difficult to control the ball when she attacked from the backhand.”
Equally for Yadira Silva it was a tough examination.
“I made many mistakes blocking in the early part of the match; she played quite slowly and I couldn’t time the ball”, explained Yadira Silva. “The ball seemed to drop quickly but as the match progressed I adjusted and played more positively, directing my attacks more to her forehand than backhand.”
Honour in Defeat
Defeats for Paula Medina and Jessica Yamada but honour in defeat; both showed progress, both impressed.