by Simon Daish
Germany’s Shan Xiaona went into the encounter against Li Qian of Poland off the back of a 4-3 victory in the previous round over Suthasini Sawettabut, but in the last 16 Shan ended up on the losing side of a 4-3 result as Li put in a fine showing to claim a big scalp in the top half of the draw.
The opening two ends saw alternating player dominance with Li and then Shan displaying their strengths in games one and two respectively, but then the match began to grow tighter for the following two games and by the conclusion of game four the tie was all square at 2-2.
Both competitors were determined to give it their all and with the fifth and sixth games not able to produce a winner the match went down to the deciding end, which eventually resulted in Li sealing her spot in the last eight of the competition (11-5, 4-11, 12-10, 9-11, 11-7, 3-11, 11-9).
Top seed Kasumi Ishikawa is the opponent awaiting Li Qian in the next round after the Japanese representative condemned Singapore’s Zhou Yihan to elimination.
Zhou was seeded 13 places below Ishikawa for the Women’s Singles competition and while the end scoreline may suggest a comfortable victory for Ishikawa, the performance from Zhou made for an exciting match (11-8, 11-3, 9-11, 13-11, 11-5) and the Singapore player can leave Stockholm feeling satisfied with her efforts at the Open.
There were very few surprises in the other two encounters taking place in the top half of the draw; Chinese Taipei’s Cheng I-Ching continued to live up to her status of being the third seed for the event by registering a 4-1 success over Romanian player Bernadette Szocs to advance to the quarter-finals, while the 10th seed Suh Hyowon of Korea Republic defeated the No.18 seed Misaki Morizono after a sixth end triumph over the Japanese contestant (10-12, 11-7, 11-7, 11-6, 6-11, 12-10).
Saturday 19th November: Women’s Singles – Main Draw