by Ian Marshall, ITTF Publications Editor
In Class 8, Norway’s Aida Dahlen, after accounting for Russia’s Elena Litvinenko at the semi-final stage (11-7, 12-10, 11-4), repeated the success of earlier in the group stage and two years ago in Denmark. She beat Germany’s Juliane Wolf, the no.2 seed, in the final (11-7, 12-10, 11-4).
A second consecutive European success for Aida Dahlen, for Turkey’s Neslin Kavas, it was her fourth in a row. The winner in 2011 in Split, two years later in Lignano, in addition to 2015 in Vejle, she secured the Class 9 title once again. In a group organised event, she finished in first place ahead of Poland’s Karoline Pek; third position was the lot of Russia’s Olga Komleva.
Success upon success for Neslihan Kavas but no-one can match Poland’s Natalia Partyka; two years ago in Vejle she beat Denmark’s Sophie Walloe in the Class 10 final. In Lasko she did exactly the same again emerging successful in three straight games (11-3, 11-8, 11-8).
Commencing in 2003 in Zagreb, Natalia Partyka has now won nine singles titles at the European Para Championships and has a penchant for Slovenia; in 2007 in Kranjska Gora, as the previous year in Jesolo, Italy, she won both the Class 10 and Open titles.
Furthermore, starting in 2002 in Chinese Taipei, you can add five Women’s Singles titles at World Championships and, with a first success in Athens in 2004, four consecutive gold medals at the Paralympic Games.
Retaining titles, in Class 6 it was a case of regaining the precious title. In the one event in the whole tournament where a defending champion, in this instance Croatia’s Sandra Paovic, was not on duty, Russia’s Raisa Chebanika, London 2012 Paralympic Games gold medallist, emerged victorious. She beat Poland’s Katarzyna Marszal at the final hurdle (8-11, 11-8, 11-7, 11-7, 11-4).
At the inaugural European Para Championships in Frankfurt in 2001, she had won the Class 6-7 title; four years later in Jesolo she had been crowned the Class 6 champion.
Meanwhile, in Class 11; Ukraine’s Natalya Kosmina reversed the decision of two years ago. Defeat in Vejle, it was success in Lasko; the no.2 seed, by the very narrowest of margins, she beat Russia’s Elena Prokofeva, the top seed (7-11, 11-7, 10-12, 11-9, 12-10) to arrest the title.
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