by Ian Marshall, ITTF Publications Editor
A good day for all but pride of place goes to 16 year old Alexandra Vovk; second place in her group had been her lot, having experienced a close five games defeat at the hands of Clara Kakol, the no.8 seed (13-11, 7-11, 11-8, 9-11, 11-6).
One day later, she caused the biggest upset in the opening round; she overcame Germany’s Janina Kammerer, the no.6 seed (4-11, 11-8, 7-11, 11-8, 11-7, 11-7) to book her place in the second round of proceedings.
Additionally, in partnership with Ana Tofant, the duo reserved a place in the penultimate round of the Junior Girls’ Doubles competition by ousting the in-form Hungarian pairing of Kata Fule and Fanni Gondor (11-4, 7-11, 12-10, 11-8). One round earlier Kata Fule and Fanni Gondor had accounted for Klara Cakol and Andrea Pavlovic, the no.4 seeds (11-4, 7-11, 12-10, 11-8).
At the semi-final stage Ana Tofant and Aleksandra Vovk meet Germany’s Caroline Hajok and Jennie Wolf, the no.2 seeds; in the opposite half of the draw Chinese Taipei’s Su Pei-Ling and Wei Ruei-Ling, the top seeds, face the combination of Janina Kammerer and Serbia’s Sabina Surjan, the no.4 seeds.
Impressively, in the quarter-final round, Caroline Hajok and Jennie Wolf beat the partnership formed by Moldova’s Vlada Caraulnaia and Japan’s Yuko Kato (11-5, 12-10, 12-10); whilst in a similarly impressive manner Su Pei-Ling and Wei Ruei-Ling defeated Serbia’s Tijana Jokic and Dragana Vignjevic (11-6, 11-9, 4-11, 11-7).
Meanwhile, in the one remaining quarter-final duel it was the end of the road for the host nation, Tamara Pavcnik and Katarina Strazar experienced defeat at the hands of Janina Kammerer and Sabina Surjan (11-8, 11-5, 9-11, 11-6).
However, for both Tamara Pavcnik and Katarina Strazar, there is more than consolation for the doubles reverse. Katarina Strazar is very much alive in the Cadet Singles event, a competition in which the leading players have yet to commence their main draw matches, whilst Tamara Pavnik is through to the Junior Girls’ Singles second round.
Tamara Pavcnik, the no.11 seed, after being beaten by Germany’s Anastasia Bondareva (11-4, 11-8, 2-11, 11-5) in the first phase and thus finishing in second place in the group, accounted for Hungary’s Orsolya Feher in a titanic seven games duel (11-7, 12-10, 5-11, 8-11, 14-12, 8-11, 15-13) to reserve her second round place.
Dramatic moments, in a somewhat different manner, it was the same for Ana Tofant.
The no.13 seed, like Tamara Pavcnik, she had finished in second place in her group, losing to Germany’s Lotta Rose (11-9, 6-11, 11-2, 11-5); in the opening round of the main draw, she caused an upset almost the equivalent of that achieved by Alexandra Vovk. She accounted for Klara Cakol, the no.8 seed (10-12, 11-6, 12-10, 11-8, 12-10).
Success for the Tamara Pavnik and Ana Tofant, for the players against whom they had experienced defeat in the group phase, it was mixed fortunes.
In the opening round of the Junior Girls’ Singles event, Anastasia Bondareva beat England’s Denise Payet (11-3, 13-11, 11-7, 11-9); Lotta Rose witnessed defeat at the hands of a rejuvenated Andrea Pavlovic (12-10, 9-11, 11-7, 5-11, 11-7, 11-9).
In the group stage of affairs Andrea Pavlovic, the no.14 seed, had been beaten by Orsolya Feher (11-9, 10-12, 11-3, 5-11, 11-3); one day later for the two players, the fortunes were very different.
Surprises, however for the remaining leading names in the opening round of the Junior Girls’ Singles event there were no such upsets.
Amy Wang of the United States, the no.5 seed, beat the host nation’s Lara Opeka (11-5, 11-7, 12-10, 11-9); Sabina Surjan, the no.7 seed, accounted for Hungary’s Fanni Gondor (11-7, 11-5, 8-11, 14-12, 11-5).
Japan’s Kana Takeuchi and Yuko Kato, the respective top two seeds, alongside Chinese Taipei’s Su Pei-Ling and Germany’s Caroline Hakok were not called to first round action
Play concludes in Otocec on Sunday 25th September.