30 Oct 2017

Currently named at a lowly no.984 on the Under 18 Boys’ World Rankings, Kazakhstan’s 17 year old Aidos Kenzhigulov emerged the player to attract the attention in the initial phase of the Junior Boys’ Singles event at the 2017 India Junior and Cadet Open in Greater Noida on Monday 30th October.

He ended the day as the biggest surprise name to finish in first place in the qualification group stage of play.

by Ian Marshall, ITTF Publications Editor

In his opening contest he caused a major upset by beating Abdulla Albalooshi from the United Arab Emirates, the no.9 seed, in a full distance five games duel (5-11, 12-10, 9-11, 14-12, 11-7).

A fine start to the day and he continued in that vein in his immediate ensuing contest; he accounted for India’s Divyarish Srivastava in four games (11-4, 6-11, 12-10, 11-8) but then in his concluding group phase contest he experienced a full distance five games defeat at the hands of Hrishikesh Malhotra, also from India (11-4, 9-11, 14-12, 1-11, 11-6).

Earlier, contrary to expectations Abdulla Albalooshi had suffered defeats at the hands of Hrishikesh Malhotra (9-11, 11-9, 11-6, 13-11) and when facing Divyarish Srivastava (11-7, 11-9, 7-11, 11-9). Meanwhile, to add to the equation, in his first match in the group Divyarish Srivastava had beaten Hrishikesh Malhotra in four games (12-14, 11-7, 11-8, 11-8).

Thus games ratio was needed to determine the top three places; the outcome was first position for Aidos Kenzhigulov (5:4), followed by Divyarish Srivastava (4:4) with Hrishikesh Malhotra in third spot (4:5) and thus like Abdulla Albalooshi eliminated.

Players finishing in first and second positions in each group advance to the main draw.

One surprise first place and there was one more; in an all Indian contest, Anukran Jain, the no.6 seed, was beaten Soham Bhattacharya (11-8, 11-6, 11-8) but that was his only defeat; second place in the group and progress to the main draw was secured. Soham Bhattacharya remained unbeaten to top the group.

Otherwise for the leading names it was a day unbeaten and first place in the group; Thailand’s Yanapong Panagitgun and Singapore’s Pang Yew En Koen duly secured first places in their respective group as anticipated but it was Indian names that were to the fore.

Manav Vikash Thakkar, Snehit Suavajjula, Manush Utpalbhai Shah and Jeet Chandra duly topped their group without experiencing defeat as did Himnakulhpuingheta Jeho and Payas Jain.

Likewise for Pang Yew en Koen, Himnakulhpuingheta Jeho and Payas Jain, in the Cadet Boys’ Singles event it was a day without defeat and first place in the group. Conversely, for the one further competitor in the event who possesses a world ranking there was defeat. India’s Yashansh Malik was beaten by Korea’s Yu Seokhoon (13-11, 11-4, 6-11, 11-7).

However, it was to be his only defeat of the day, second place and thus progress to the main draw was attained; Yu Seokhoon remained unbeaten to top the group.

Play in the Junior Boys’ Singles and Junior Girls’ Singles events continues on Tuesday 31st October.


World Junior Circuit 2017 India Junior and Cadet Open Aidos Kenzhigulov