by Ian Marshall, ITTF Publications Editor
Georgina Pota, the no.10 seed, accounted the Sweden’s Matilda Ekholm, the no.14 seed (11-6, 11-6, 9-11, 11-7, 8-11, 11-0), a player who more usually is a colleague rather than an adversary; earlier this year on the Seamaster 2017 ITTF World Tour they won the Women’s Doubles title in India, whilst on the Challenge Series they succeedeed in Slovenia.
Focus on the opponent’s backhand early in the rally was the avowed tactic of Georgina Pota, well aware of the effectiveness of the Matilda Ekholm forehand; the Swede may not possess the most powerful forehand topspin in the world but the changes in spin and level of consistency pose problems for over eager adversaries.
Following the ploy Georgina Pota secured the opening two games, before in the third, leading 9-8 lost the next three points to reduce her advantage to one game. In the ensuing fourth game she led 9-7, Matilda Ekholm appeared to be mounting a recovery. Georgia Pota elected for “Time Out”. It proved a prudent move. The next two points were secured; a three games to one lead was established.
Once again in Matilda Ekholm threatened a recovery but it was quickly extinguished; she won the fifth game but in the sixth was never at the races. Georgina Pota duly reserved first place.
An impressive performance by Georgina Pota was followed by arguably an even more impressive performance by Chinese Taipei’s Chen Szu-Yu; the no. 11 seed, she beat Hong Kong’s Lee Ho Ching, the no.13 seed, in four straight games (11-9, 13-11, 11-9, 11-3).
Win the crucial points was the key to the Chen Szu-Yu success. A close first game, in the second she trailed 4-7 before recovering to move ahead 10-9 and on her third game point securing success. Likewise a close third game followed but the fourth was very different. Increasingly confident she won the first six points and never looked back.
Matilda Ekholm now meets Australia’s Jian Fang Lay to decided second place in the group, similarly, Lee Ho Ching confronts Chile’s Paulina Vega.
Uncle Pop 2017 ITTF Women’s World Cup presented by Polar Naturals: Latest Results