by Simon Daish
Luisa Saeger enjoyed a bright start to the tournament after the German player picked up two wins from her opening three encounters in Worcester.
Opening her account with a seven games triumph over Jennie Wolf in a thrilling all-German battle (7-11, 9-11, 11-7, 8-11, 11-8, 11-8, 11-9) Luisa Saeger took a big confidence boost into her second tie, defeating Tania Plaian of Romania in straight games (11-7, 11-3, 11-5, 11-5) to put her name near the top of the points table.
Spanish competitor Zhang Xuan has made a decent opening to her campaign in Worcester, ending the day with two victories to her name.
Despite losing out to Belgium’s Lisa Lung across six games Zhang Xuan heads into the second day of play just a single point off the pace, following terrific displays against Serbia’s Izabela Lupulesku (6-11, 12-10, 7-11, 11-6, 11-9, 9-11, 11-8) and Russia’s Anastasia Kolish (12-10, 13-11, 5-11, 12-10, 11-8).
Three Romanians are competing in the Junior Girls’ Singles event and the country’s table tennis fans endured a day of mixed emotions.
Adina Diaconu leads the competition with six points, registering victories against the host nation’s Denise Payet (11-5, 11-9, 11-8, 11-3) and fellow compatriots Andreea Dragoman (6-11, 11-4, 5-11, 13-11, 11-9, 12-10) and Tania Plaian (11-3, 11-7, 11-8, 11-4). Plaian and Dragoman end the day with three and four points respectively.
Over in the Cadet Girls’ Singles event three players stood above the rest on day one as Camille Lutz, Jamila Laurenti and Sophia Klee impressively came through the action undefeated.
Camille Lutz got her campaign off to a positive start with back-to-back victories achieved against fellow French representatives Lou Frete (11-7, 8-11, 11-8, 11-8, 11-9) and Isa Cok (11-9, 9-11, 11-7, 6-11, 11-5, 4-11, 11-6) before completing her hat-trick of wins with a confident performance against England’s Charlotte Bardsley (8-11, 11-5, 11-6, 11-8, 11-5).
Jamila Laurenti also saw off Charlotte Bardsley prior to registering successful outcomes against Turkey’s Ozge Yilmaz (11-9, 11-13, 8-11, 11-3, 11-5, 11-7) and Germany’s Anastasia Bondareva (11-6, 9-11, 9-11, 13-11, 10-12, 11-9, 14-12) to move the Italian into joint first position in the leader board.
The third player who carried a 100% win record heading into Saturday’s action is Sophia Klee who also produced good results against Ozge Yilmaz and Anastasia Bondareva before adding a third win to her name with a powerful display against Wenna Tu (12-10, 11-8, 12-14, 7-11, 11-8, 11-5).