by Simon Daish
Young Stars Secure Silverware
While the unseeded Sun Jiayi performed well to reach the Under 21 Women’s Singles final, the Croatian missed out on the fairy tale ending as third seed Nina Mittelham produced a fantastic display to secure the title in four games (11-4, 3-11, 11-4, 13-11).
Similarly the higher ranked player prevailed in the Under 21 Men’s Singles final as the top seeded contestant Mizuki Oikawa defeated Russia’s Sadi Ismailov (11-9, 12-10, 11-6) in a rather one-sided duel.
Qualifiers Reach Penultimate Round
Kirill Gerassimenko continues to impress on the international stage, after the Kazakhstan representative came through a tight quarter-final encounter against England’s Samuel Walker.
Very little separated the two unseeded players, but it was Kirill Gerassimenko who held the slight edge across the six games (9-11, 11-7, 11-8, 12-10, 8-11, 11-7) and will take on the top seed Quadri Aruna for a spot in the final.
The lower half of the draw sees Japan’s qualifier Kaii Yoshida meet Germany’s Benedikt Duda in the semi-finals, following respective victories over Quentin Robinot (9-11, 12-10, 11-6, 10-12, 11-6, 11-7) and Sathiyan Gnanasekaran (11-4, 11-8, 11-7, 8-11, 9-11, 11-7) in the last eight.
Home Player Keeps Title Dream Alive
Three of the four competitors left in the hunt for the Women’s Singles title are Japanese representatives, with the host nation’s Li Qian the exception.
Seeded eighth for the tournament Poland’s Li Qian caused somewhat of an upset in the quarter-finals, ousting the second seed Hu Melek of Turkey with little difficulty (11-7, 11-8, 9-11, 11-6, 11-4).
Next up for Li Qian is a fixture against Saki Shibata, who proved too strong for Nina Mittelham (11-6, 7-11, 12-10, 11-7, 11-7). Mima Ito and Miyu Kato will do battle in the other semi-final, guaranteeing Japan’s representation in the final.