by Ian Marshall, ITTF Publications Editor
Impressive last year; this year has been steady progress for the 16 year old, who has become an increasingly familiar face on the 2017 ITTF Challenge Series.
On home soil in Thailand, the level of success was very measured; she did not progress beyond the qualification stage of either the Women’s Singles or Under 21 Women’s Singles events. Notably she was beaten by Chinese Taipei’s Wen Rue-Ling, the player who is the no.4 seed in the Junior Girls’ Singles event in Bangkok but as yet to really shine this year.
Perhaps slightly disappointed by her efforts in Bangkok but since that day it has been a learning experience and step by step prpgress. At the Seamaster 2017 Asian Championships in Wuxi, she reached the second round of the Women’s Singles event where she lost to the player against whom everyone experienced defeat; she was beaten by Japan’s Miu Hirano, the eventual champion.
Likewise in Slovenia, at the ITTF Challenge Series tournament it was second round exit in the Under 21 Women’s Singles event; she lost to Miyuu Kato, also from Japan. However, in her most recent international appearance, the following week in Zagreb it was a much more encouraging performance. She advanced to the quarter-final round of the same event. She was beaten by Korea’s Ji Eunchae, the eventual runner up.
Next in line to Jinnipa Sawettabut is the Hong Kong duo of Wong Chin Yau and Lee Ka Yee.
Impressively at the 2017 ITTF Challenge Series Thailand Open, Wong Yau reached the quarter-final stage of the Under 21 Women’s Singles event, having earlier on the ITTF World Junior Circuit advanced to the Junior Girls’ Singles penultimate round in Metz and the quarter-final stage Sweden.
Likewise, Lee Ka Yee was on duty in France and Sweden, excelling in the Cadet Girls’ Singles events; in France she was a quarter-finalist; in Sweden, it was three steps higher. She emerged as the champion overcoming Germany’s Sophie Klee in the final.
Hong Kong’s Chau Wing Sze and India’s Pareek Priyaka, alongside the Chinese Taipei duo of Chien Tung-Chuan and Huang Yu-Jie complete the top eight names in the Junior Girls’ Singles event.
Like Wen Ruei-Ling all are players seeking to make a mark on this year’s international scene.