by Ian Marshall, ITTF Publications Editor
Colleague Iheb Kallel in partnership with the Indian pairing of Shriram Kannan and Shaurya Pedneker proved more than worthy opponents.
After overcoming the trio formed by Algeria’s Ilyes Boulefkhad, who joined forces Saudi Arabia’s Nawaf Altaher and Basil Alshaya, without great alarm, to make the best possible start to their campaign; five hours later, times were more testing.
A three-nil margin of victory, as in the opening fixture, but every match was decided in five games. Omar Ammous beat Shriram Kannan (8-11, 9-11, 11-0, 11-8, 11-6), Mootezz Saadaoui accounted for Shaurya Pedneker (9-11, 11-8, 3-11, 11-6, 11-3), before Aboubaker Bourass ended matters. He overcame Iheb Kallel (11-8, 11-8, 7-11, 8-11, 11-6).
Iheb Kallel, Shriram Kannan and Shaurya Pedneker meet Ilyes Boulefkhad, Nawaf Altaher and Basil Alshaya to decide second place in the group and thus a passport to the main draw.
In the corresponding group to determine top spot; Algeria’s Azzeddine Lazazi, Abderrahmane Sebia and Islem Tifoura confront the combination formed by Egypt’s Ziad Wael and Ahmed Meshref who line up alongside Tunisia’s Atef Ben Salah.
Success for Tunisia in the Junior Boys’ Team event; there was also success for the hosts in the counterpart Cadet Boys’ Team competition.
Representing Tunisia ‘A’, Khalil Sta and Youssef Ben Attia secured first place in their group ahead of the Egypt ‘A’ Team combination of Youssef Abdelwahab, Omar Allam, and Ahmed Elmady.
Meanwhile, Tunisia ‘D’ with Youssef Abid, Habib Ameur and Raed Elloumi on duty, finished in second place in their group behind Italy’s Matteo Gualdi and John Oyebode; Tunisia ‘B’ represented by Hamza Guerfali, Mohamed Amine Sta concluded the day next in line to India’s Payas Jain and Maanav Mehta.
In the one remaining Cadet Boys’ Team group, the Algeria ‘A’ pairing of Abderrahmane Azzala and Abdelbasset Chaichi first place; second position was reserved by Saudi Arabia’s Meshari Aldawsari, Saud Almutairi.
In both the Junior Boys’ Team and Cadet Boys’ Team event; outfits finishing in first and second positions in each group advance to the main draw.
Both events conclude on Tuesday 4th April.
Photos: Mokhtar Hmima