by Ian Marshall, ITTF Publications Editor
In the initial stage of proceedings she had been beaten by Kim Vermaas of the Netherlands, the highest rated player in her group; agonisingly she had experienced defeat by the minimal two point margin in the deciding fifth game (11-8, 11-5, 7-11, 6-11, 12-10).
Second place meant odds of progress were stacked against her; however, she received one of the three “Lucky Loser” places drawn at random from the 13 players who had finished in group runners up spot.
An opportunity but again the odds were stacked against Norwegian teenager, in the opening round of the Under 21 Women’s Singles event, she faced Romania’s Adina Diaconu, the no.2 seed; in a dramatic five games contest Rebekka Carlsen emerged successful, the decider being was of monumental tension (11-8, 11-8, 5-11, 10-12, 18-16).
“This is amazing. It’s the biggest win in my career. The match against Diaconu was very close and in the end, I was happy that I could deal with the pressure. I am working very hard and this is already a nice reward; with this good form I can hope to cause more upsets in this tournament.” Rebekka Carlsen
An opening round success against the odds, the efforts of Rebekka Carlsen totally overshadowed the performances of five further players who had been required to compete in the qualification stage and caused opening round upsets.
Korea was very much in evidence; Kim Haeun beat England’s Tin-Tin Ho, the no.10 seed (10-12, 11-8, 11-4, 11-9), Kim Yedam accounted for Russia’s Maria Malanina, the no.13 seed (11-9, 7-11, 9-11, 11-3, 11-6).
Good form from Kim Haeun and Kim Yedam; it was the same from the Czech Republic’s Kristyna Stefcova, Romania’s Alena Zaharia and Russia’s Kristina Kazantseva. Impressively Kristyna Stefcova beat Marie Migot of France, the no.12 seed (11-4, 11-7, 11-6). Similarly Kristina Kazantseva caused France heartaches, she overcame Pauline Chasselin, the no.5 seed (11-6, 15-13, 11-4), whilst not be outdone Alena Zaharia accounted for the host nation’s Lisa Lung, the no.8 seed (11-8, 11-8, 11-8).
Surprises; however for three noteworthy names there was opening round success.
Korea’s Lee Zion, the top seed, beat Norway’s Ilka Doval (11-3, 11-7, 11-5), Brazil’s Bruna Takahashi, the no.3 seed, accounted for Italy’s Veronica Mosconi (7-11, 11-8, 11-7, 11-8); Li Yu-Jhun, the no.4 seed, ended the hopes of Charlotte Carey of Wales (5-11, 13-11, 8-11, 11-9, 11-8).