by Ian Marshall, ITTF Publications Editor
The top seeds, Jiang Tianyi and Lam Siu Hang experienced defeat in opposition the Germany’s Benedikt Duda and Steffen Mengel, the no.8 seeds. They were beaten by the minimal two point margin in the deciding game (14-12, 9-11, 5-11, 11-9, 12-10).
At the same time Ho Kwan Kit and Ng Pak Nam, the no.2 seeds, almost suffered the same fate. They were required to recover from a two games to nil deficit before eventually overcoming Swedish qualifiers, Simon Berglund and Hampus Nordberg (9-11, 4-11, 11-6, 11-4, 11-8).
One surprise and there was one more upset, although comparatively minor, as the quarter-final stage of the Men’s Doubles event progressed; India’s Harmeet Desai and Soumyajit Ghosh, the no.5 seeds, accounted for the Czech Republic’s Tomas Konecny and Tomas Polansky, the no.4 seeds (11-9, 9-11, 12-10, 9-11, 11-5).
Now, at the semi-final stage Harmeet Desai and Soumyajit Ghosh meet Benedikt Duda and Steffen Mengel; Ho Kwan Kit and Ng Pak Nam face the host nation’s Daniel Gorak and Wang Zengyi, the no.7 seeds. In the round of the last eight, Daniel Gorak and Wang Zengyi overcame Czech Republic qualifiers Antonin Gavlas and Tomas Tregler (11-3, 9-11, 11-9, 11-6).
Meanwhile, at the quarter-final stage of the Women’s Doubles event, Hong Kong was very much to the fore, Doo Hoi Kem and Lee Ho Ching, the top seeds, emerged successful but like Ho Kwan Kit and Ng Pak Nam they were tested. They needed the full five games to end the hopes of Japanese qualifiers Saki Shibata and Maki Shiomi (6-11, 11-5, 11-13, 13-11, 11-9).
Defeat for Japan but there was the reverse scenario and an unexpected outcome. Likewise qualifiers, Miyu Kato and Miyu Maeda overcame Hungary’s Dora Madarasz and Szandra Pergel (11-5, 11-9, 12-10).
In the penultimate round Miyu Kato and Miyu Maeda meet the combination formed by Russia’s Polina Mikhailova and Viktoria Pavlovich of Belarus; Doo Hoi Kem and Lee Ho Ching confront the partnering comprising Slovenia’s Alex Galic and Switzerland’s Rachel Moret.
Defence firm, in the quarter-finals, Polina Mikhailova and Viktoria Pavlovich, the no.4 seeds, had beaten the French pairing of Pauline Chasselin and Audrey Zarif, the no.6 seeds (11-8, 7-11, 11-7, 11-9); Alex Galic and Rachel Moret had overcome Croatian qualifiers Dorina Srebrnjiak and Sun Jaiyi (5-11, 11-8, 11-9, 13-11).
The semi-final contests will be played later in the day.