by Ian Marshall, ITTF Publications Editor
Not only did Minnie Soo Wai Yam reserve her place in the last four; Mak Tze Wing followed suit.
Minnie Soo Wai Yam, the top seed, beat Chinese Taipei’s Li Yu-Jhun, the no.9 seed (11-7, 11-8, 11-7) to secure her place in the last four, whilst Mak Tze Wing once again displayed her liking for Romania.
At the Sun International 2016 World Junior Championships last December, she had beaten Adina Diaconu (12-10, 11-7, 11-7, 11-9) to reserve her place in the final; in Tokyo, the no.5 seed, she accounted for Andreea Dragoman, the no.8 seed, at the quarter-final stage (11-8, 11-4, 11-9).
A fine performance from the ever improving Mak Tze Wing; Andreea Dragoman was a young lady in form. One round earlier she had beaten the host nation’s Yuka Minagawa, the no.10 seed and recent winner on the ITTF World Junior Circuit in Poland.
Defeat for the host nation but there was good news; both Miyuu Kihara and Yuka Umemura reserved penultimate round places.
Yuka Umemura, yet another Japanese female player born in 2000, the same as Miu Hirano, Mima Ito and Hina Hayata, accounted for Chinese Taipei’s Huang Yu-Wen, the no.7 seed (11-3, 2-11, 11-5, 14-12) and Adina Diaconu, the no.4 seed (11-5, 7-11, 7-11, 11-9, 11-6) to reserve her place in the last four. Yuka Umemura started proceedings as the no.12 seed.
An exciting tournament beckons
Meanwhile, in a similarly impressive manner, Miyuu Kihara, the no.6 seed and only 12 years old overcame colleagues Asuka Sasao, the no.13 seed (11-13, 11-7, 11-6, 11-7) and Minami Ando, the no.2 seed (9-11, 3-11, 11-7, 11-5, 11-9).
At the semi-final stage Minnie Soo Wai Yam meets Yuka Umemura, Mak Tze Wing opposes Miyuu Kihara.
The semi-finals and final will be played on Thursday 15th June.