by Ian Marshall, ITTF Publications Editor
Contrary to status but when considering the country in which she has honed her skills, the success gained by Huang Yingqi, the no.18 seed, when beating Daria Trigolos of Belarus, the no.11 seed, in the opening round (13-11, 11-6, 11-5), raised just one eyebrow.
One round later as status advised, Huang Yingqi ended the hopes of Italy’s Giorgia Piccolin, the no.26 seed (11-8, 11-8, 8-11, 11-9).
Similarly, Izabela Lupulesku, the no.15 seed, caused Belarus heartaches in the opening round by overcoming Nadezhda Bogdanova, the no.29 seed (13-11, 11-7, 11-9), prior to reserving her quarter-final place with victory in opposition to Russia’s Kristina Kasantseva, the no.23 seed (6-11, 11-5, 11-8, 11-5).
Notably both Giorgia Piccolin and Kristina Kasantseva had caused opening round upsets. Giorgia Piccolin had beaten Chinese Taipei’s Huang Yu-Wen, the no.7 seed (6-11, 11-9, 2-11, 11-8, 11-1); Kristina Kasantseva had overcome Audrey Zarif of France, the no.6 seed (12-10, 12-10, 12-10).
Two surprise quarter-finalists but there were no more; impressively the top four names all booked their last eight places in style.
Puerto Rico’s Adriana Diaz, the top seed, beat Hungary’s Bernadett Balint, the no.12 seed (11-8, 11-9, 11-6), whilst Japan’s Mizuki Morizono, the no.2 seed, overcame England’s Tin-Tin Ho, the no.13 seed (7-11, 16-14, 11-6, 11-5). In a similar vein, Asuka Sasao, like Mizuki Morizono from Japan and the no.3 seed, ended the hopes of Russia’s Maria Malanina, the no.14 seed (11-1, 12-10, 11-3). Meanwhile, not to be overshadowed, Germany’s Nina Mittelham, the no.4 seed, halted the aspirations of Chinese Taipei’s Huang Yu-Chiao, the no.9 seed (6-11, 11-9, 11-8, 11-9).
At the quarter-final stage, in the top half of the draw, Adriana Diaz meets Huang Yingqi, Asuka Sasao opposes Chinese Taipei’s Lin Chia-Hsuan, the no.8 seed. In the lower half, Nina Mittelham faces Russia’s Mariia Tailakova, the no.5 seed; Mizuki Morizono confronts Izabela Lupulesku.
The matches will be played later in the day.