// Conclusion approaches, players set for final day showdown in Minsk - International Table Tennis Federation


19 Mar 2017

The first ITTF Challenge Series event of the year is approaching its conclusion, as the Palace of Tennis in Minsk prepares to host the final day of the 2017 ITTF Challenge Belgosstrakh Belarus Open.

Four senior competition titles are on offer on Sunday 19th March, with the singles and doubles events drawing to a halt.

by Simon Daish

Starting off Day Three’s action will be semi-finals encounters in the Women’s Singles and Men’s Singles tournaments, as the four remaining players from each competition battle it out for a chance to reach the respective finals.

Saki Shibata heads into the final day of the Belarus Open looking to lift the Women’s Singles trophy for the second year in a row, but a tricky semi-final match against top seed Hitomi Sato is first on the agenda for the no.8 seed.

The other match set to take place in the last four sees Takako Nagao face the second seeded player for the event Honoka Hashimoto.

Following the two Women’s Singles semi-final matches will be the penultimate round of the Men’s Singles tournament.

Runner up in 2014, Wang Zengyi of Poland will be hoping to secure a strong finish to his campaign in Minsk as he goes head-to-head with Russia’s Grigory Vlasov in the lower half of the draw.

Awaiting the winner of the semi-final between Wang Zengyi and Grigory Vlasov is a meeting with either one of Sun Chia-Hung or two-time champion Vladimir Samsonov.

Top seed Samsonov may be the slight favourite to reach the final, but Sun has shown potential to cause an upset throughout his time in Minsk, will the Chinese Taipei competitor add another big scalp to his list and progress, or will Samsonov give the home fans something to cheer about?

Yuto Kizukuri (left) and Misaki Takami will look to combine well in the Men’s Doubles final (Photo: Masha Kozhdan)

After a short break the attention turns to the Men’s Doubles and Women’s Doubles finals.

Japan’s Yuto Kizukuri and Masaki Takami will take on Poland’s Wang Zengyi and Daniel Gorak in the title match for the Men’s Doubles draw, while the sixth seeds face the third seeds in the Women’s Doubles final as Chinese Taipei’s Lin Chia-Hsuan and Lin Po-Hsuan go up against Miyu Kato and Misaki Morizono of Japan.

Rounding off the day and bringing the 2017 Belarus Open to a close are the Women’s Singles and Men’s Singles finals.

Watch the 2017 ITTF Challenge Belgosstrakh Belarus Open unfold, follow the action live with itTV

Challenge Series Saki Shibata Hitomi Sato Honoka Hashimoto Yuto Kizukuri Masaki Takami Wang Zengyi Daniel Gorak Takako Nagao

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