by Ian Marshall, ITTF Publications Editor
Notably he is the one previous winner on duty, having emerged successful in 2013 in Santos when beating colleague Gustavo Tsuboi in the final.
Gustavo Tsuboi is one of Hugo Calderano’s major rivals, he is the no.5 seed in the Men’s Singles event; also he is a major ally, he is Hugo Calderano’s Men’s Doubles partner and a very worthy partner.
Together they have become an increasing force on the global scene. On the ITTF World Tour in 2015 in Qatar, they were the runners up, losing to the combination of Portugal’s Marcos Freitas and Croatia’s Andrej Gacina. Similarly, earlier this year it was the second step of the podium when beaten by China’s Fang Bo and Zhou Yu.
However, sandwiched in between, last December they won in Sweden beating the French partnership of Antoine Hachard and Stéphane Ouaiche in the final.
In São Paulo, the principal opposition may well come from India’s Amalraj Anthony and Soumyajit Ghosh, the winners last week in Chile. Likewise both will be a force in the Men’s Singles event, Soumyajit Ghosh, the winner in opposition to Amalraj Anthony in Chile, is the no.3 seed, Amalraj Anthony is the no.8 seed.
Germany’s Patrick Baum is the no.2 seed with Romania’s Hunor Szocs being the no.4 seed; Brazil’s Cazuo Matsumoto and Frenchman Andrea Landrieu are the respective no.6 and no.7 seeds.
Other than for Hugo Calderano, Cazuo Matsumoto is the one player on duty in São Paulo with an ITTF World Tour Men’s Singles title to his credit; he won in Almeria in 2013 beating Frenchman Christophe Legout in the final.
Making their presence felt, Patrick Baum and Hunor Szocs have been knocking on the door but it has yet to open. Last week in Chile, Hunor Szocs was a semi-finalist; in 2009 in Japan and in 2014 in the Czech Republic, Patrick Baum was the runner up.
The situation is somewhat different for Andrea Landrieu; winner of the Cadet Boys’ Singles title at the 2011 European Youth Championships, it is very much the transition stage from promising junior to established senior.
Notably earlier this year he reached the quarter-final stage of the Men’s Singles event at the Swiss Open; in São Paulo he has the chance to make his mark; an opportunity beckons.