by Ian Marshall, ITTF Publications Editor
A win against the odds, Jang Woojin is presently listed at no.54 in the global, order; furthermore for Sathiyan Gnanasekaran it is his second consecutive surprise win.
The previous day against expectations he secured first place in his group; notably both matches being in seven games. After accounting for Hong Kong’s Kwan Man Ho (9-11, 11-7, 8-11, 11-7, 11-3, 8-11, 11-3) he caused an upset of note by beating Romania’s Ovidu Ionescu, listed at no.68 on the Men’s World Rankings in a titanic duel (13-11, 8-11, 11-8, 3-11, 3-11, 11-8, 14-12).
“I played very well against Jang Woojin, he’s very high ranked, 54 in the world, and I’m 89, so I was not under pressure. I started off very well, I think I played very good tactics and played very aggressively. He was not able to receive my serves well and my attacking play was very good.
Four-nil was definitely a surprise win for me against a player like Jang Woojin. I started off well, two-nil. In the third game, I was 3-9 down; this game was crucial. After I won this game, I knew he was under pressure and I managed to pull it off a four-nil win. I’m very happy.
Yesterday was very close, saving three match points and winning 14-12 in full seven games contest and the other group match was also four-three. I think that gave me very good confidence, when you win close matches, the confidence level goes up. I’ve been playing very well for the past few months. So with the great confidence, I ended up upsetting him today.
It’s a great win for me, and Indian table tennis is on a rising boom now, a lot of players are playing well and with our captain Sharath Kamal Achanta, he’s been a very good leader for us and he’s been supporting us well. So we are playing very well and I believe soon India will become a new superpower in table tennis.
Thank you fans for the support; Indian fans has been really great and always so supportive. Do cheer me up for the next round and I hope I end up in the main draw!” Sathiyan Gnanasekaran
Success for Sathiyan Gnanasekaran as play in the Men’s Singles preliminary rounds began; also there was notable success for England’s Liam Pitchford and Poland’s Jakub Dyjas.
Liam Pitchford beat Sweden’s Jon Persson (12-10, 5-11, 11-9, 11-2, 11-9), Jakub Dyjas accounted for Hong Kong’s Ho Kwan Kit (10-12, 11-5, 11-2, 7-11, 11-5, 12-10)