by Ian Marshall, ITTF Publications Editor
At the final hurdle Cho Daeseong and Amy Wang accounted for the combination of Japan’s Yukiya Uda and Romania’s Elena Zaharia (12-10, 5-11, 11-8) to reserve the top step of the medal podium, having in the penultimate round ended the hopes of the formation comprising Sharon Alguetti of the United States who allied with the Czech Republic’s Zdena Blaskova (12-10, 5-11, 11-8).
“It was an interesting match. Our opponents put us under pressure and made the match challenging and tough. Today I made some mistakes but my partner played well. Mixed Doubles is different from singles. The co-operation and how we co-ordinate is much more important. So in the final, we will try our best”, Amy Wang after the semi-final Mixed Doubles success against Sharon Alguetti and Zdena Blaskova
In the counterpart semi-final, Yukiya Uda and Elena Zhaharia had defeated Italy’s Carlo Rossi who teamed with Australia’s Danni-Elle Townsend (11-6, 11-6).
“Yes, we always play very good; Yukiya’s banana flick is very very good. Now we will play in the final. We never played before, but our co-operation is very good, and we are very happy that we will be in final. We can be the champion, we will very concentrated”, Elena Zaharia after the semi-final Mixed Doubles win against Carlo Rossi and Danni-Elle Townsend
An innovative competition, the event reflects the spirit of ITTF World Cadet Challenge; whilst being an important tournament in its own right, there is the underlying theme of goodwill, understanding and co-operation.
“I’m really thankful for my partner, he is really good. The final was really competitive and really fun”, Amy Wang after the Mixed Doubles final.
Pairs are drawn at random with no player from the same team being drawn together; matches are best of three games.
“Amy and Daeseong were still nervous before the match but they played well in the first and third games. In the second game, Cho was making more mistakes and lost that game. So in the last game, I told Amy that she has to play aggressively and look out for opportunities to attack and win. Both of them are strong amongst the players here, so they were happy to be paired together for the mixed doubles. They weren’t co-ordinating well in the semi-finals earlier today but they learned from that and played better in the final.” Liang Wang Qing, the United States coach after the Mixed Doubles final
It is the second time the event has been staged; the inaugural edition was one year ago in Sharm El-Sheik, Egypt when Sweden’s Truls Moregard partnered Puerto Rico’s Adriana Diaz to gold.
2016 ITTF World Cadet Challenge: Cadet Boys’ Singles – Groups
2016 ITTF World Cadet Challenge: Cadet Boys’ Singles – Positions 1-16
2016 ITTF World Cadet Challenge: Cadet Boys’ Singles – Positions 17-32
2016 ITTF World Cadet Challenge: Cadet Girls’ Singles – Groups
2016 ITTF World Cadet Challenge: Cadet Girls’ Singles – Positions 1-16
2016 ITTF World Cadet Challenge: Cadet Girls’ Singles – Positions 17-32