by Ian Marshall, ITTF Publications Editor
Farewell in round one to one World Championships bronze medallist partnership; it was the same for another but in rather different circumstances.
The host nation’s Hina Hayata and Mima Ito who had lost to eventual champions, China’s Ding Ning and Liu Shiwen at the semi-final stage in Düsseldorf, were forced to withdraw from proceedings owing to a knee injury sustained by Hina Hayata. It is possible she may withdraw from the Women’s Singles event. Chinese Taipei’s Cheng Hsien-Tzu and Lin Chia-Chih received a walk over.
No quarter-final place for two seeded pairs; it was the same for one more. Hong Kong’s Doo Hoi Kem and Lee Ho Ching experienced an opening round defeat at the hands of China’s Chen Ke and Wang Manyu (11-9, 9-11, 11-8, 11-6).
Three unexpected departures, the end result is that only one seeded partnership remains in the top half of the draw. Japan’s Honoka Hashimoto and Hitomi Sato, the no.1 seeds, booked their quarter-final place by overcoming Korea’s Choi Hyojoo and Jung Yumi (11-7, 6-11, 11-6, 11-7).
Success for the top seeds, there was also success for the second seeds; Korea’s Jeon Jihee and Yang Haeun overcame Hong Kong’s Ng Wing Nam and Minnie Soo Wai Yam ( 11-9, 6-11, 11-3, 11-7).
Meanwhile, not to be outdone and also in the lower half of the draw, Chinese Taipei’s Chen Szu-Yu and Cheng I-Ching duly reserved their place in the quarter-finals. They accounted for the partnership formed by Portugal’s Shao Jieni and Singapore’s Zeng Jian (11-6, 11-5, 11-7).
The quarter-finals of the Women’s Doubles event will be played on Friday 16th June.
Photos: courtesy of Japan Table Tennis Association