by Simon Daish
With the Fijian team having lost out 3-0 to Serbia in the opening group C encounter, the squad of Grace Rosi Yee, Sally Yee and Ruta Ioane were hoping to cause an upset in Fiji’s remaining tie of day one against opponents Puerto Rico.
However, the No.19 seeds Fiji would go on to suffer another straight games defeat as Adriana Diaz, Lineris Rivera and Paola Sanabria put in strong displays for Puerto Rico; Adriana Diaz gave the Puerto Rican team the early lead with her win over Grace Rosi Yee (11-1, 11-7, 11-3) before Lineris Rivera doubled the country’s advantage with her 3-0 triumph against Sally Yee (11-3, 11-4, 11-6).
Paola Sanabria brought the match to a close, dropping just eight points across three ends to overcome Ruta Ioane (11-3, 11-3, 11-2). The victory for Puerto Rico puts the team on two points, alongside Serbia at the summit of group C with the two sides set to meet later in the day.
South African fans were left disappointed in the Girls Team draw after their squad made it back-to-back defeats in group D.
Keshmika Sivnarain, Musfiquh Kalam and Lekeasha Johnson were unfortunately unable to better South Africa’s opening 3-0 loss to Spain, as they fell by the same scoreline to Canada in the second tie. Alicia Cote didn’t come across too much trouble as she claimed success against the host nation’s Keshmika Sivnarain (11-3, 11-4, 11-5) to put the Canadian team 1-0 ahead.
The standout battle of the tie saw Ivy Liao give Canada a 2-0 lead as she beat Musfiquh Kalam (19-17, 17-15, 7-11, 11-3) in a highly entertaining four games encounter. Justina Yeung settled the match, defeating South Africa’s Lekeasha Johnson (11-7, 11-8, 11-8) to give Canada the two points on offer.
Two more 1st stage group matches were played out with Egypt and Algeria picking up wins in group A and group B respectively; Australia will finish third in group A after Egypt’s Amira Yousry, Mariam Alhodaby and Sarah Abousetta all registered straight game victories for the African country while 17th seeds Algeria held on to prevent a Nigerian comeback with Alimot Ayinla pulling through for the Algerian squad with a brace of wins.