by Ian Marshall, ITTF Publications Editor
Kenta Matsudaira, the no.2 seed, emerged successful as status advised; he accounted for Peng Wang-Wei and thus very much repeated the outcome of their one prior meeting in a world ranking event.
One year ago at the 2016 ITTF World Tour Czech Open, Kenta Matsudaira had emerged successful in their opening round Men’s Singles encounter in six games (8-11, 11-8, 11-7, 11-3, 7-11, 11-3). In Panagyrushite, it was little different, Kenta Matsudaira won in five games (11-4, 7-11, 11-8, 11-8, 11-8).
Success as anticipated but for Kenta Matsudaira, at 26 years of age, two years the junior of Kenji; the second round win elder brother secured was contrary to the pecking order. He beat colleague, Maharu Yoshimura, the no.4 seed, in six games (12-10, 9-11, 11-6, 9-11, 11-9, 11-6).
A surprise but only a minor upset; two players from the same national association, well known to each other, suggested the contest was in balance as did prior results. On the ITTF World Tour in Chile in 2012, Kenji Matsudaira had prevailed, when the two met in round two; last year at the quarter-final stage in Poland the verdict had gone in favour of Maharu Yoshimura.
Quarter-final places for Kenta Matsudaira and Kenji Matsudaira; likewise colleagues Jin Ueda and Kenta Tazoe emerged successful in their second round duels.
Jin Ueda, the no.5 seed, beat Cédric Nuytinck (11-7, 11-7, 12-10, 7-11, 11-8); Kenta Tazoe ended the hopes of colleague and qualifier Taku Takakiwa (11-9, 12-10, 6-11, 11-7, 11-8).
At the quarter-final stage Kenji Matsudaira meets Kenta Tazoe; Jin Ueda opposes Kenta Matsudaira.
Both quarter-finals and semi-finals of the Men’s Singles event will be played on Saturday 19th August.