06 Aug 2017

Fresh from the rigours of India’s Ultimate Table Tennis, the host nation’s Kim Song I duly booked her place in the ultimate round of both the Women’s Singles and Women’s Doubles events at the 2017 ITTF Challenge Pyongyang Open by emerging successful on Saturday 5th August.

Furthermore, she achieved the feat at the expense and with the support of DPR Korean colleague, Choe Hyon Hwa.

by Ian Marshall, ITTF Publications Editor

The technically correct defensive skills stood firm as she partnered Choe Hyon Hwa to a Women’s Doubles semi-final success, before later in the same round, overcoming her colleague in the Women’s Singles competition.

Success but it was hard earned success; in the Women’s Doubles penultimate round duel, the full five games were needed to beat Cha Hyo Sim and Kim Nam Hae (11-8, 10-12, 11-6, 7-11, 11-5).

Later in the same round of the Women’s Singles competition, Kim Song I was tested by her doubles partner, at one stage staring the possibility of defeat in the face. She lost the first two games against Choe Hyon Hwa before winning the next four to secure victory (7-11, 7-11, 11-6, 11-7, 11-7, 11-4).

Testing contests, in the opposite half of the draw, life was less demanding. Once again in all DPR Korean contests, Ri Hyon Sim and Ri Mi Gyong booked their place in the Women’s Doubles final courtesy of success against Jong Un Ju and Kim Jinju (11-9, 11-5, 11-9), before in the semi-final stage of the Women’s Singles event, Cha Hyo Sim repeated her success of two years earlier.

At the semi-final stage of the Under 21 Women’s Singles event at the GAC Group 2015 ITTF World Tour Pyongyang Open, Cha Hyo Sim had beaten Kim Sol Song in straight games (11-5, 11-9, 11-3). Two years later she repeated the feat in the penultimate round of the Women’s Singles competition; she overcame Kim Sol Song without losing a single game (14-12, 11-4, 11-9, 11-7).

Play in the 2017 ITTF Challenge Pyongyang Open concludes on Sunday 6th August.

Day Two: 2017 ITTF Challenge Pyongyang Open

Photos: Ri Myong Song

Challenge Series 2017 DPR Korea Open Kim Song I Choe Hyon Hwa