by Ian Marshall, ITTF Publications Editor
Meanwhile, Ecuador represented by Eunice Galvez and Emeliy Quinllin, the next in the order of merit, experienced only a slightly more difficult journey to pole position.
Impressively, Janina Nieto and Dayana Jaramillo combined to overcome the Costa Rica ‘A’ Team partnership of Nicole Granados and Fiorella Vallecillo before, with Adriana Galdamez partnering Janina Nieto, a second three matches to nil success was recorded in opposition to the El Salvador ‘C’ Team partnership of Johanna Beltran and Michelle Quinteros.
Likewise Eunice Galvez and Emely Quinllin recorded a three-nil victory over the Costa Rica ‘B’ Team partnership of Kimberly Arias and Silvia Trejos, as well as in opposition to the El Salvador ‘B’ Team combination of Dinora Salazar and Gabriela Romero.
However, against the El Salvador ‘A’ Team partnership of Emme Arias and Cecilia Orantes, life was more testing; a three matches to one win was the end result but the contest was arguably closer than the margin of victory may suggest, three of the four matches went the full five games distance.
Emme Arias gave the host nation the ideal start by beating Eunice Galvez (9-11, 11-6, 5-11, 11-6, 11-4) but that was to be her team’s only success.
Cecilia Orantes was beaten by both Emely Quinllin (11-6, 11-2, 11-7) and by Eunice Galvez (3-11, 11-5, 11-7, 4-11, 11-5), with sandwiched in between the Ecuadorians securing the vital doubles (11-6, 12-14, 11-9, 10-12, 11-6).
Defeat for El Salvador ‘A’ but it was their only reverse, as it was for Costa Rica ‘A’; thus with teams finishing in first and second places advancing to the second stage, semi-final places were reserved.
Progress for Ecuador and El Salvador in the Junior Girls’ Team event; it was the same in the Cadet Girls’ Team competition, where similarly, there were two groups in the initial phase.
Keren Constanza and Gabriela Suarez, on duty for El Salvador ‘A’, finished ahead of Ecuador’s Mylena Plaza and Viviam Ruiz; Melissa Mendoza and Monica Mendoza, representing El Salvador ‘B’, concluded matters in second spot in their group behind the combination of Guatemala’s Lucia Cordero and Puerto Rico’s Nicole Malave.
Play in the Junior Girls’ Team and Cadet Girls’ Team events, concludes on Friday 26th August.