by Ian Marshall, ITTF Publications Editor
However, there were surprise names who secured first places, Russia’s Ilia Anokhin, Iran’s Radin Khayyam and Chinese Taipei’s Wang Yi-Fan all completed the day without defeat to reserve top positions in their respective groups; a feat also achieved by Yashansh Malik.
All beat the highest rated players in their respective groups to gain success. Ilia Anokhin recovered from a two games to nil deficit to overcome India’s Himnakulhhpuingheta Jeho (6-11, 9-11, 11-8, 11-7, 11-3); Radin Khayyam accounted for Tunisia’s Youssef Ben Attia (11-5, 11-5, 9-11, 11-3), whilst Yashansh Malik defeated Slovenia’s Matija Novel (11-7, 11-9, 11-7).
It was for Himnakulhhpuingheta Jeho, Youssef Ben Attia and Matija Novel their only defeat; thus second place in the group and progress to the main draw was reserved.
The situation in the group involving Wang Yi-Fan was somewhat different; he beat Croatia’s Lovro Zokvo (8-11, 11-5, 11-5, 7-11, 11-8) and duly remained unbeaten. However, Lovro Zokvo was also beaten by Slovakia’s Adam Klajber (10-12, 11-4, 8-11, 11-8, 11-7) and had to settle for third place. Adam Klajber duly finished in second position.
Top spot for Wang Yi-Fan was no great surprise; the previous day he had won the Cadet Boys’ Team title in partnership with Li Hsin-Yu. Notably Li Hsin-Yu remained unbeaten to top his group.
Meanwhile, in the Cadet Girls’ Singles event, both Chinese Taipei’s Chen Ci-Xuan and Serbia’s Rita Bezeg accounted for the leading names in their respective groups, duly remaining unbeaten to secure first places.
Chen Ci-Xuan, who the previous day had won the Cadet Girls’ Team title in partnership with Cai Fong-En, accounted for Slovenia’s Lea Palin (11-9, 11-4, 11-6), Reka Bezeg overcame Malamatenia Papadimitriou of Greece (11-9, 11-8, 8-11, 4-11, 11-4). It was the only defeat for Lea Palin and Malamatenia Papadimitriou; thus second place in the group was reserved.
Two surprise first places in the initial phase of the Cadet Girls’ Singles event; there was one more; Korea’s Kim Seongjin secured top spot with India’s Vanshika Bhargava, the highest rated, in second spot.
Kim Seongjin experienced defeat at the hands of Vanshika Bhargava by the very narrowest of five game margins (10-12, 8-11, 11-2, 11-8, 13-11) but recovered to beat Russia’s Diana Loginova in three straight games (12-10, 11-9, 11-4). Earlier Diana Loginova had overcome Vanshika Bhargava in five games (11-2, 2-11, 11-7, 7-11, 11-9).
Thus on games ratio it was first place for Kim Seongjin (5:3) followed by Vanshika Bhargava (5:5) and Diana Loginova (3:5).