by Ian Marshall, ITTF Publications Editor
Fine performances against expectations but they were not alone.
Next in the pecking order of upsets came Kazakhstan’s Kirill Gerassimenko. He beat Slovakia’s Wang Yang, the no.12 seed (5-11, 11-7, 6-11, 8-11, 12-10, 11-5, 11-2), whilst lower down the order a further Frenchman in the guise of Abdel-Kader Salifou was in form. He accounted for Portugal’s João Geraldo, the no.18 seed (11-4, 11-7, 6-11, 12-10, 11-2).
Imposing performances, it was the same from the Czech Republic’s Michal Obeslo, Aliaksandr Khanin of Belarus and England’s Sam Walker, as it was from Brazil’s Cazuo Matsumoto.
Michal Obeslo caused Poland further pain by beating Daniel Gorak, the no.22 seed (12-10, 11-9, 11-7, 11-9), Aliaksandr Khanin overcame the Czech Republic’s Dmitrij Prokopcov, the no.21 seed (13-11, 8-11, 9-11, 13-15, 11-9, 11-8, 11-7). Similarly, Sam Walker defeated Austria’s Daniel Habesohn, the no.25 seed (12-10, 10-12, 12-10, 5-11, 12-10, 11-3), Cazuo Matsumoto ended the hopes of Slovakia’s Lubomir Pistej, the no.32 seed (11-3, 11-8, 11-9, 3-11, 11-9).
Eight upsets, the one further exit for a seeded player was a technical knock-out; Russia’s Alexey Liventsov received a walk-over against Frenchman, Adrien Mattenet, the no.10 seed.
Surprises but for the two leading names in the top half of the Men’s Singles first round draw there was success.
Nigeria’s Quadri Aruna, the top seed, beat Poland’s Patryk Zatowka (13-11, 15-13, 7-11, 11-4, 11-7), Hong Kong’s Ho Kwan Kit, the no.4 seed, ended the aspirations of Brazil’s Eric Jouti (11-8, 17-15, 11-3, 10-12, 11-5).
“He has more experience; it was easy to see in the last games. I felt I had chance to win but I made too many mistakes.”Patryk Zatowka
The second round of the Men’s Singles event will be played later in the day.