19 May 2017

Japan in the guise of Koyo Iwabuchi and Nobuyuki Suzuki was assured of a semi-final place in Men’s Class 9, at the 2017 World Team Para Championships in Bratislava, Slovakia; the previous day they had secured first place in their group.

Likewise, providing they were not kidnapped and arrived in the venue for their concluding group stage fixture, the Swedish duo of Anders Andersson and Daniel Gustafsson was also guaranteed progress to the main draw.

by Ian Marshall, ITTF Publications Editor

The Swedes duly arrived and made absolutely sure of top spot by recording a two-nil win against Mexico’s Angel Castro and Miguel Vazquez; the question to be answered was who would gain second place in each of the two groups and thus also advance to the main draw.

Furthermore, with no bronze medal play-off fixtures; a medal was in fact at stake.

Tension, the verdicts went in favour of Germany and Finland.

Playing the same group as Japan, Germany beat Kazakhstan by two matches to nil; in the opposite group, Finland recorded the same margin of victory in opposition to Hong Kong,

Yannik Ruddenklau and Christian Kalb combined to secure the doubles to give Germany the perfect start; they beat Talgat Erekeyer and Nurzhan Korpetayev in four games (11-5, 11-4, 7-11, 11-4), before Yannik Ruddenklau accounted for Nurzhan Korpetayev to conclude matters (8-11, 11-9, 13-11, 11-9).

“This match was very important to us because it determined if we would proceed to the semi- final. I lost the first game in my singles match against Nurzhan but in the next three games, I was able to play my game. My service was also much better in the second game.” Yannik Ruddenklau

Good form from Yannik Ruddenklau, it was the same from Esa Miettinen in Finland’s success against Hong Kong.

He partnered Ismo Lallo to doubles win against Wong Chi Yun and Lam Ka Wei (11-5, 11-8, 9-11, 13-11), prior to overcoming Wong Chu Yuan to seal the victory (11-13, 11-6, 6-11, 13-11, 11-7)

“It was a very difficult match for me in the singles against Wong Chi Yin. At the start of the match, I didn’t have any feeling for my backhand but as the match progressed, I started to find my feeling and won many points from my backhand. My serves were also good during the match. We will meet Japan next in the semi-final tomorrow. It will be a tight match, but I think we stand a good chance.” Esa Miettinen

The semi-finals and final of Men’s Class 9 are scheduled for Saturday 20th May.

Day Three: World Para Team Championships

Photos: Richard Kalocsai

2017 World Para Team Championships: Draw and Latest Results

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