by Simon Daish
Li Ahmet and Gencay Menge were handed a difficult fixture in the Preliminary Round of 16, with the Turkish combination going head-to-head with Romania’s Cristian Pletea and Rares Sipos in the top half of the draw.
However, despite Cristian Pletea and Rares Sipos putting in a decent display it was Li Ahmet and Gencay Menge who progressed to the main draw after the Turkish representatives prevailed over four games (11-6, 8-11, 11-7, 11-8).
Another pairing from Turkey to negotiate the qualifying rounds is Ibrahim Gunduz and his partner Abdullah Yigenler, who recovered from a trailing position to beat Kiryl Barabanov and Pavel Platonov of Belarus (4-11, 11-9, 4-11, 11-9, 11-5).
Bulgaria has seen one of its teams advance beyond the qualifying stages with Petyo Krastev and Kiril Popov claiming a straight games victory over Spain’s Carlos Franco and Miguel Vilchez (11-2, 13-11, 11-8), while the mixed nationality pairing of Paraguay’s Marcelo Aguirre and Latvia’s Matiss Burgis overcame India’s Sarthak Gandhi and Sougata Sarkar (11-6, 11-6, 11-7) to qualify for the main event.
Over in the Women’s Doubles Preliminary Round of 16 there was cause for celebration for the home nation, as two Belarusian pairings made it through to the main draw.
Nadezhda Bogdanova and Daria Trigolos recovered from a two games deficit to beat Simay Kulakceken and Gul Pembe Ozkaya of Turkey (7-11, 6-11, 11-6, 11-8, 11-9), and the team of Alina Arlouskaya and Viktoria Pavlovich put in a strong showing in their duel with Ukraine’s Yaroslava Prykhodko and Anastasiya Yepifantseva (11-8, 11-5, 12-10).
There may have been disappointment for one of Ukraine’s combinations, but for the other two pairs representing the country there was nothing but joy.
Victory across five ends over Bulgaria’s Krasimira Yovkova and Maria Yovkova saw Ukraine’s Ganna Farladanska and Ievgeniia Vasylieva edge their way into the main event (11-8, 12-10, 10-12, 6-11, 11-6), while Solomiya Brateyko and Veronika Perebeinos defeated Puerto Ricans Adriana Diaz and Melanie Diaz (11-9, 7-11, 11-7, 14-12).
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