by Ian Marshall, ITTF Publications Editor
Bronze was to be the colour of the medal for each member of the trio; Rungroj Thainiyom who had won gold in London four years earlier, was not able to repeat the achievement secured in England’s city when the top step of the medal podium had been his lot.
Undoubtedly, the 29 year old is undoubtedly a major challenger for honours; presently he is listed at no.3 on the Men’s Class 6 World Rankings behind Spain’s Alvaro Valera and Denmark’s Peter Rosenmeier, the finalists in Rio de Janeiro with Alvaro Valera, the winner.
Notably in May 2013, he reached no.2 on the rankings; whilst in 2015 in Amman securing Men’s Singles Class 6 gold.
Meanwhile, in Rio de Janeiro, success for Anurak Laowong and Yuttajak Glinbanchuen came in Men’s Team Class 3; arguably the third place was somewhat contrary to expectations.
Presently, 34 year old Anurak Laowong is listed at no.14 on the Men’s Class 3 World Rankings, Yuttajak Glinbanchuen, only 19 years of age, is named at no.16.
Similar to Rungroj Thainiyom, both Yuttajak Glinbanchuen and Anurak Laowong enjoyed success at the 2015 Asian Para hampionships.
Together they won silver in Men’s Team Class 3; apart in Men’s Singles Class 3, they were bronze medallists.
A total of 96 men and 34 women will participate, representing 17 national associations. In addition to Thailand, entries have been received from Australia, Chinese Taipei, Germany, Hong Kong, Israel, Japan, Korea, Kuwait, Lebanon, Macao, Malaysia, the Netherlands, New Zealand, the Philippines, Russia and Singapore.
2016 Thailand Para Open Championships: Latest results from Pattaya