by Ian Marshall, ITTF Publications Manager
Three matches to nil wins in each contest in the first stage qualification group, for Chen Yi, Yang Yiyun and Zhang Xiaoyu, it was exactly the same in the main draw. Chen Yi and Yang Yiyuan competed in the singles matches Zhang Xiaoyu joined Chen Yi for the doubles.
They accounted for the Belarus duo of Ulyana Alkhouskaya and Yuliya Zaleskaya in an impressive manner prior in the quarter-final round, prior to repeating the performance by overcoming Romania in the semi-finals. The Romanians fielded Elena Zaharia and Luciana Mitrofan in the singles, Ioanna Singeorzan and Irina Rus joined forces to form the doubles combination.
A place in the final booked; victory in opposition to India’s Diya Parag Chitale and Munmun Kundu concluded matters. Chen Yi beat Munmun Kundu (11-1, 11-4, 9-11, 11-1), before Yang Yiyun accounted for Diya Parag Chitale (11-7, 11-2, 11-9) and Chen Yi combined with Zhang Xiaoyu to secure the doubles (11-8, 13-11, 11-5).
Meanwhile, in the opposite half of the draw, Diya Parag Chitale and Munmun Kundu had beaten the French partnership of Chloe Chomis and Charlotte Lutz by three matches to nil, prior to recording a three-one penultimate round success in opposition to Serbia’s Reka Bezeg and Radmila Tominijak.
The one win for the Serbians was recorded by Radmila Tominijak, in the opening match of the fixture, she accounted for Munmun Kundu (11-8, 9-11, 11-8, 11-6). However, wins from Diya Parag Chitale against Reka Bezeg (8-11, 11-3, 8-11, 12-10, 11-6) and in opposition to Radmila Tominijak (11-7, 11-4, 11-4) plus doubles success in harness with Munmun Kundu ensured success (11-2, 11-8, 14-12).
Alas for India in the final, it was just one step too far.
Play concludes on Sunday 18th February with the Cadet Boys’ Singles, Cadet Girls’ Singles, Cadet Boys’ Doubles and Cadet Girls’ Doubles events.