by Ian Marshall, ITTF Publications Editor
Furthermore, she caused a major upset as she progressed safely through the two required preliminary rounds.
She accounted for Ukraine’s Tetyana Bilenko (11-6, 11-5, 8-11, 11-5, 11-9), prior to overcoming Austria’s Liu Jia, four times an ITTF World Tour Women’s Singles winner; most notably the champion in 2014 when the tournament was held in Szombathely. Impressively, Dora Madarasz prevailed in six games (12-10, 6-11, 12-10, 14-12, 8-11, 11-9).
“I am delighted I could beat two top players only a couple of hours apart. In every critical situation I was able think clearly and play the game which was planned. I was strong in the key moments of every single game.” Dora Madarasz.
Defeat for one player who has enjoyed ITTF World Tour Women’s Singles success and there was defeat for another; twice a winner, Viktoria Pavlovich of Belarus was beaten by China’s He Zhoujia (11-5, 9-11, 11-6, 12-10, 8-11, 11-4).
Problems for defensive players in the guise of Tetyana Bilenko and Viktoria Pavlovich; honour was maintained by Poland’s Li Qian and Ganna Gaponova, like Tetyana Bilenko from Ukraine. Li Qian beat Italy’s Giorgia Piccolin (11-3, 11-3, 11-8, 11-6) to reserve her place in the main event; similarly, Ganna Gaponova overcame Germany’s Petrissa Solja (3-11, 11-5, 7-11, 11-6, 11-2, 13-11).
“It is very first time I have had a chance to play against her. I needed one game to be able to understand her play; I played point by point and gradually I became more and more confident. I am so happy to make the main draw.” Ganna Gaponova
Defeat for Petrissa Solja, there was also defeat for colleague, Sabine Winter, winner on the ITTF World Tour in 2013 in Minsk; she was beaten by Russia’s Olga Vorobeva (11-5, 14-12, 11-9, 11-5). Disappointments for Germany but there was success, Nina Mittelham ended the hopes of Chinese Taipei’s Lee I-Chen (6-11, 11-7, 11-13, 5-11, 11-3, 12-10, 11-5).
Success for Nina Mittelham as anticipated but in addition to the defeats of Liu Jia, Viktoria Pavlovich and Sabine Winter, there were two further surprises; both recorded by players with no current world ranking. Monaco’s Yang Xiaoxin beat Singapore’s Lin Ye (11-6, 8-11, 11-4, 11-7, 11-7) to reserve her place in the main draw; likewise Italy’s Li Xiang ended the hopes of Croatia’s Sun Jiayi (11-6, 11-13, 11-8, 11-4, 11-5).
Main draw positions secured, additionally Egypt’s Dina Meshref, Romania’s Bernadette Szocs and Adina Diaconu alongside Russia’s Polina Mikhailova reserved their places, as did China’s Sun Yingsha, Hong Kong’s Ng Wing Nam, India’s Mouma Das and Poland’s Natalia Partyka.
Play in the main draw commences on Thursday 18th January.