09 Sep 2017

A surprise winner one day earlier when in Men’s Singles Class 5, he had beaten Brazil’s Cladiomiro Segatta, the top seed, at the semi-final stage, before clinching the title at the final expense of Argentina’s Elias Romero; on the concluding day of action, Saturday 9th September, at the 2017 Czech Para Open in Ostrava, the host nation’s Rene Taus continued his winning ways.

Partnering colleague, Jiri Zak, the duo combined to win the Men’s Team Class 5 event.

by Ian Marshall, ITTF Publications Editor (Interviews by Frantisek Zalewsky)

Not only did the duo secure the top prize; they upset the odds and for the second consecutive day caused Claudiomiro Segatta heartaches.

In a group organised event, with both teams unbeaten heading into the final contest, the Czech duo, the second seeds, recorded a two-one success against top seeded partnership formed by Claudiomiro Segatta and Chile’s Cristian Gonzalez Astete.

Mainstay of the victory was Rene Taus; he combined with Jiri Zak to win the doubles (11-9, 11-7, 11-3), before defeating Cristian Gonzalez Astete (11-8, 11-7, 11-7) in the vital third match of the fixture. Sandwiched in between Claudiomiro Segatta had accounted for Jiri Zak by the very narrowest of five game margins (8-11, 11-2, 9-11, 11-6, 11-9).

“I’m glad I did so well here in Ostrava. It was a great tournament, everything was fine; Jiri and myself played well together in the team competition, it was great.” Rene Taus

“Winning the doubles was key in the final; good co-operation was vital, it is a huge success.” Jiri Zak

Success against expectations for Rene Taus and Jiri Zak; in the other Men’s Team wheelchair categories it was success for the top seeded outfits and better news for Brazil.

Welder Knaf, who had beaten Japan’s Shinichi Yoshida in Men’s Class 3 final, joined forces with his earlier adversary to win Men’s Team Class 3; the top seeds they recorded two matches to nil victories in every fixture. In an impressive manner they beat Poland’s Mariusz Czerwinski and Jenson Van Emburgh of the United States in the final.

The win meant Welder Knaf departed Ostrava with two titles and without a defeat against his name. It was the same for Poland’s Rafael Czuper. Success against the Czech Republic’s Jiri Suchanek in the Men’s Singles Class 2 final; in Men’s Team Class 1-2 he allied with colleague Tomasz Jakimczuk to claim the top prize.

Partnering compatriot Martin Zvolanek, once again Jiri Suchanek had to settle for silver but he had the consolation of extracting the one and only win against the champions in elect. In the second match in the final, he beat Tomasz Jakimczuk (11-6, 8-11, 10-12, 11-2, 11-8).

Meanwhile, in the one remaining event in the Men’s Team wheelchair categories; it was success for combination of Croatia’s Tomislav Spalj and Poland’s Krszysztof.

In a group organised event, the finished in first place in Class 4 ahead the Slovak outfit who selected from Peter Mihalik, Andrej Meszarosz and Boris Travnicek. Third place was the lot of Romania’s Ioan Dirlea and Petru Ifrosa.

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Photos: Frantisek Zalewsky

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