by Ian Marshall, ITTF Publications Editor
The biggest upset; Japanese supporters may disagree with me; Satsuki Odo continued her quite amazing run.
She reserved her place in the last eight of the Women’s Singles event by causing yet another surprise, the only factor to take into consideration when comparing with Nina Mittelham is that Satsuki Odo overcame a colleague, a well-known opponent. However, that argument can be balanced by the fact that she is only 14 years old.
Required to compete in the qualification tournament, she accounted Maki Shiomi, the no.5 seed (8-11, 11-8, 6-11, 14-12, 11-3, 13-11).
Two upsets but that was the sum total of surprises with the host nation experiencing mixed fortunes. Facing Japanese opposition. Natalia Partyka, the no.13 seed was beaten by Saki Shibata, the no.7 seed (12-14, 11-5, 15-13, 6-11, 11-6, 11-8); conversely Li Qian, the no.8 seed, upheld Polish honour by overcoming Miyu Maeda, the no.14 seed (11-5, 8-11, 11-5, 12-10, 11-9).
“I felt I had chances, I could have won but it was no to be.” Natalia Partyka
Last eight places for two Japanese players and for two more; as status advised Mima Ito, the top seed, beat Russia’s Yana Noskova, the no.19 seed (11-4, 11-9, 11-9, 11-3); Miyu Kato, the no.3 seed, ended the hopes of Norway’s Ma Wenting, the no.24 seed (13-11, 11-9, 11-9, 11-5).
Meanwhile, in the two remaining third round matches it was success for Hong Kong and for Turkey. Lee Ho Ching, the no.6 seed, beat Luxembourg’s Ni Xia Lian, the no.10 seed (4-11, 13-11, 12-14, 11-6, 11-8, 11-7); Hu Melek, the no.2 seed, ended the hopes of Sweden’s Linda Bergström, the no.32 seed (8-11, 11-7, 12-10, 11-3, 11-4).
At the quarter-final stage in the top half of the draw Mima Ito meets Satsuki Odo, Lee Ho Ching opposes Miyu Kato. In the opposite half Nina Mittelham meets Saki Shibata, Li Qian opposes Hu Melek.
The matches will be played later in the day.