by Ian Marshall, ITTF Publications Editor
The opening match of the campaign, Jinnipa Sawettabut succeeded in an encounter where resisted a spirited challenge from her 21 year old adversary to emerge victorious in seven games (11-8, 12-10, 6-11, 11-8, 9-11, 11-6).
A notable success, it is one that may well prove a watershed for the Thai teenager. She has taken a major step towards securing her place in the first round of an ITTF World Tour Women’s Singles event for the first time in her young career.
Prior to competing in Austria, she was on duty in Bulgaria, the Czech Republic and Japan; on all three occasions journey’s end was in the initial phase.
Conversely on this year’s ITTF World Junior Circuit she has enjoyed notable success; she reached the semi-final round of the Junior Girls’ Singles event in both Jordan and the Slovak Republic.
A surprise defeat for one player who started the day as the highest ranked in her group; there was a reverse for one more such name. Poland’s Kinga Stefanska, presently listed at no.134 on the Women’s World Rankings, was beaten by Korea’s Park Joohyun (10-12, 11-5, 11-7, 11-8, 11-5), a player with current global status.
Defeats for Bernadette Szocs and for Kinga Stefanska but the door is not closed to the main draw; players finishing in first and second positions in each of the 16 groups, join 32 seeds in the first round.
Problems the highest rated in the qualification stage but not for the next three in the order of merit; all overcame host nation adversaries in their opening contests.
Japan’s Kyoka Kato beat Daniela Moskovits (11-5, 11-2, 11-8, 11-5), Chinese Taipei’s Lee I-Chen defeated Jennifer Jonsson (11-7, 11-7, 11-4, 11-7); whilst the Czech Republic’s Hanna Matelova accounted for Tilda Johansson (11-4, 11-6, 11-5, 11-7).
The first stage of the Women’s Singles event continues on Wednesday 16th November.
The opening day at the 2016 ITTF World Tour Swedish Open