by Ian Marshall, ITTF Publications Editor
Note the name Pattaratorn Passara, playing in his second Asian Championships; he made his debut two years ago on home soil in Pattaya
Last year at the Aspire Junior and Cadet Open in Doha, he impressed, he reached the semi-final stage of the Junior Boys’ Singles event before later in the year in Jordan reserving the top step of the podium.
In Wuxi, in the contest against Turkmenistan; after Supanut Wisutmaythangkoon had beaten Ravil Ahmedov (11-7, 11-7, 11-5), Pattaratorn Passara overcame Rashid Ahmedov (11-7, 11-8, 8-11, 11-6).
Throughout the contest, Pattaratorn Passara held the aces. The factor to impress was his high skill level; as they say in the trade, he has good hands, good feeling.
Often in sport and table tennis is no exception; there is the tendency to stereotype players. If that exercise is to be followed, Pattaratorn Passara is a talented left hander in the mould of the likes of Denmark’s Michael Maze or China’s Chen Qi; players who seemingly press have the ability to produce strokes of which mere mortals can only dream.
Pattaratorn Passara is of that ilk but for such players, is there a pitfall? Is it all just that bit too easy?
Against Rashid Ahmedov in the third game his focus was not one hundred per cent; maybe against a junior player he could have recovered and won the game, the junior tends to make more unforced errors than the senior.
“I think in the past two years my speed and power has improved, in the third game today I made mistakes, my movement was not good.” Pattaratorn Passara
However, watching his face as advice was administered before the fourth game, it was evident that he was anxious to return and put the record straight. He duly completed the task in an impressive manner and underlined the fact that in Pattaratorn Passara, Thailand has a very special player.
In the next five years or even less, could he become the best player the south east Asian country has ever seen?
Impressive, in a somewhat different manner, so was Nikom Wongsiri; he beat Annaberdi Nurgeldiyev (11-6, 8-11, 11-7, 11-7) to seal the victory.