27 Apr 2017

Unbeaten on the opening day in Otocec; Croatia’s Andrea Pavlovic and Belgium Nathalie Marchetti, alongside Hong Kong’s Lam Yee Lok emerged as the players to excel expectations as matters progressed on the morning of the second day of action, Thursday 28th April, at the 2017 ITTF Challenge Slovenia Open.

All upset the pecking order to secure first places in their respective groups in the initial stage of the Under 21 Women’s Singles event.

by Ian Marshall, ITTF Publications Editor

Listed at no.135 on the current Under 21 Women’s World Rankings, Andrea Pavlovic beat Serbia’s Sabina Surjan, named at no.92 (11-9, 9-11, 12-14, 11-5, 11-8), whilst Nathalie Marchetti accounted Liu Qi, like Lam Yee Lok from Hong Kong (11-8, 11-5, 11-7).

Presently, Nathalie Marchetti stands at no.130, Liu Qi at no.76

Likewise Lam Yee Lok, currently a player with no global status overcame Chinese Taipei’s Huang Yu-Chiao, listed at no.61 in one of the closest contests of the tournament to date; she won in five games (6-11, 11-8, 12-10, 7-11, 11-9).

First place following an unexpected win; for Alina Nikitchanka of Belarus, it was first places following an unexpected defeat.

Occupying the no.73 spot on the current Under 21 Women’s World Rankings, she was beaten in her concluding group stage match by Austria’s Karoline Mischek, named at no.122; she experienced defeat by the minimal margin in the deciding fifth game (8-11, 11-7, 6-11, 11-9, 11-9).

However, the previous day Slovenia’s Lea Paulin had beaten Karoline Mischek in five games (11-8, 11-9, 7-11, 7-11, 11-9), before losing to Alina Nikitchanka in three straight games (11-9, 13-11, 11-4).

Thus games ratio determined the outcome; it was first place for Alina Nikitchanka (5:3), with next in line being Karoline Mischek (5:5) followed by Lea Paulin (3:5).

First place against the odds for Andrea Pavlovic and Nathalie Marchetti; one day earlier Korea’s Shin Yubin and Chinese Taipei’s Huang Yu-Wen had achieved the same feat.

Surprises but not in the top four groups where Russia’s Maria Malanina, Serbia’s Izabela Lupulesku, Oceane Guisnel of France and Thailand’s Jinnipa Sawettabut all ended matters in top spot.

Similarly, it was first place for Belgium’s Lisa Lung, Serbia’s Dragana Vignjevic and Korea’s Kang Dayeon.

Challenge Series 2017 Slovenian Open Lam Yee Lok Andrea Pavlovic Nathalie Marchetti

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