by Ian Marshall, ITTF Publications Editor
Top place in the initial stage group secured, a three matches to one win was posted at the semi-final stage against the El Salvador outfit formed by Julio Calderon, Josué Donado and Oscar Villalta.
Mainstay of the victory was José Villa, he accounted for Julio Calderon (11-5, 11-7, 11-9) and for Josué Donado (11-9, 11-5, 4-11, 11-6). The one further success for Mexico was secured by Damian Arce; in the third match of the fixture he beat Oscar Villalta (11-5, 11-7, 11-9). The one win for El Salvador was secured by Josué Donado; he beat Miguel Lara (11-6, 11-9, 11-13, 9-11, 13-11) in the opening match of the engagement.
An impressive semi-final success, the final was even more impressive with the Mexicans overcoming the Guatemalan trio of Hector Gatica, Allan Guttierez and Kevin Soto by three matches to nil.
Miguel Lara gave his team the perfect start by beating Hector Gatica (13-11, 13-11, 11-4), before José Villa overcame Allan Guttierez (6-11, 13-11, 11-6, 11-4) and Damian Arce concluded matters by defeating 5-11, 11-6, 11-5, 15-13).
A three-nil defeat for Guatemala in the final; in the penultimate round it had been the reverse scenario against the Honduras trio of Alfredo Lopez, José Urbina and Oscar Valeriano; a three-nil win had been the outcome.
Silver for the Guatemalan men, for their female counterparts it was gold and the title in a most impressive manner; not one individual match was surrendered as they strode to victory in a group organised event.
The crucial contest came in their concluding fixture against El Salvador; the three-nil win rather harsh on the eventual runners up with two of three matches being decided by the minimal two point margin in the deciding game.
Andrea Estrada gave Guatemala the ideal start by beating Emme Arias (11-8, 11-8, 11-9), before Mabelyn Enriquez narrowly overcame Estefania Ramirios (11-7, 4-11, 11-9, 10-12, 11-9) and Andrea Montufar had to recover from a two games to nil deficit to beat Wang de Ying (5-11, 8-11, 12-10, 11-9).
A total of 51 players from the Central American countries of Belize, Costa Rica, El Salvador, Guatemala, Honduras, Mexico and Panama are competing in the four day tournament.
Team events concluded; the individual events are next on the agenda; play concludes on Saturday 19th November.
Thursday 17th November: 2016 Central American Championships in Belize – Results of Team Events