by Ian Marshall, ITTF Publications Editor
Notably with Kim Bokrae, Kim Kyungah reached the semi-final stage of the Women’s Doubles event at the 2004 Athens Olympic Games; later with Park Miyoung she claimed six ITTF World Tour titles.
Now a new era beckons with Suh Hyowon.
“Suh Hyowon is different, she makes changes. Kim Bokrae was just solid defence, no attacking play, Suh Hyowon is much more prepared to attack, especially from the forehand; Park Miyoung is somewhere in between. I think the Hong Kong pair has improved a lot against defence and we have only been practising together for about two weeks, so today was a test.” Kim Kyungah
“She knows tactically exactly what to do; she is the senior player, she is the team captain.” Suh Hyowon
Disappointment for Hong Kong; there was further heartache; Doo Hoi Kem and Lee Ho Ching, the no.3 seeds, experienced defeat at the hands of China’s Chen Ke and Wang Manyu (7-11, 11-7, 11-8, 10-12, 11-5).
“We have prepared a lot for this match because they are rather strong players. We had some troubles while playing against them, thanks to the coach’s instruction and our impromptu performance on court, in the end, we performed better than them.”, Chen Ke.
The coach in question was Xiao Zhan, the former personal coach of Zhang Jike.
Two surprises and there were two more; India’s Manika Batra in harness with Mouma Das, accounted for Thailand’s Tamolwan Khetkhuan and Nanthana Komwong, the no.8 seeds (11-7, 10-12, 11-8, 11-6). Likewise DPR Korea’s Ri Hyon Sim and Ri Mi Gyong ended the hopes of Chinese Taipei’s Cheng I-Ching and Chen Szu-Yu, the no.5 seeds (7-11, 11-7, 11-8, 10-12, 11-5).
Surprises in the third round of the Women’s Doubles event but not where the top three pairs were concerned; China’s Chen Meng and Zhu Yuling, the top seeds, set the example. They beat Malaysia’s Chang Li Sian and Ng Sock Khim.
Similarly there was success for Japan. Mima Ito and Hina Hayata, the no.2 seeds, overcame Iran’s Neda Shahsavari and Maryam Samet (11-5, 11-9, 13-11); Honoka Hashimoto and Hitomi Sato, the no.3 seeds, defeated DPR Korea’s Choe Hyon Hwa and Kim Song I (12-10, 11-13, 11-6, 11-7).
The quarter-final matches in the Women’s Doubles event will be played on Friday 14th April.