28 Apr 2017

Opening round success for Sweden’s Matilda Ekholm and for Hungary’s Georgina Pota, the two leading names in the lower of half of the Women’s Singles draw at the 2017 ITTF Challenge Slovenia Open in Otocec.

However, as matters progressed on Friday 28th April, there were surprises.

by Ian Marshall, ITTF Publications Editor

Hong Kong’s Lam Yee Lok, Russia’s Olga Vorobeva and Mariia Tailakova alongside Chinese Taipei’s Huang Yu-Chiao, Korea’s Park Joohyn and Sweden’s Linda Bergström were the players to upset the order of merit.

Lam Yee Lok accounted for Spain’s Galia Dvorak, the no.22 seed in one of the closest matches of the round, no current World ranking, the 20 year old recorded a tense seven games win (5-11, 11-9, 7-11, 11-8, 11-7, 7-11, 11-9).

The one other contest to match the success of Lam Yee Lok in terms of a dramatic ending was the win secured by Linda Bergström; in a similarly tension packed contest, she overcame Thailand’s Tamolwan Khetkhuen, the no.30 seed (11-6, 11-7, 10-12, 12-10, 4-11, 5-11, 12-10).

Hard fought wins; it was very similar from Huang Yu-Chiao; she needed six games to overcome Germany’s Nina Mittelham, the no.25 seed (15-13, 12-10, 7-11, 11-9, 9-11, 11-9).

Defeat for Nina Mittelham; at the same time there was further heartache for Germany; Chantal Mantz, the no.29 seed, experienced defeat at the hands of Park Joohyun (11-9, 7-11, 11-9, 11-8, 11-4).

Disappointment for Germany but quite the reverse for Russia as Mariia Tailakova and Olga Vorobeva halted Romanian progress. Mariia Tailakova accounted for Camelia Iacob, the no.26 seed (9-11, 11-6, 11-9, 8-11, 12-10, 11-6), victory being secured following success for Olga Vorobeva in opposition to Irina Ciobanu (11-9, 11-3, 4-11, 11-5, 11-7).

Surprises but not amongst the leading names in the lower half of the draw; Matilda Ekholm, the no.2 seed, beat Ukraine’s Solomiya Brateyko (11-6, 6-11, 14-12, 11-6, 10-12, 11-9), Georgina Pota, the no.4 seed, accounted for India’s Pooja Saharabudhe (11-4, 11-3, 11-4, 10-12, 11-3).

Likewise, defenders Japan’s Honoka Hashimoto, the no.5 seed and Russia’s Polina Mikhailova, the no.6 seed, emerged successful; both ending French hopes

Honoka Hashimoto proved too safe for Judith Liu (11-9, 8-11, 11-7, 11-4, 11-4), as did Polina Mikhailova when facing Emmanuelle Lennon proved just the same (11-7, 11-7, 11-5, 6-11, 11-8).

Challenge Series 2017 Slovenian Open Mariia Tailakova Linda Bergstrom Lam Yee Lok Olga Vorobeva Huang Yu-Chiao Park Joohyn

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