by Ian Marshall, ITTF Publications Manager
Next in line to Wan Yuan is Romania’s Adina Diaconu in an event that witnesses a strong host nation presence. Alina Nikitchanka, Daria Trigolos and Nadezhda Bogdanova fill the next three places; Ukraine’s Solomiya Brateyko, Poland’s Natalia Bajor and Russia’s Mariia Tailakova complete the top eight names.
Likewise in the Women’s Doubles competition, the host nation is also prominent. Nadezhda Bogdanova and Daria Trigolos occupy the top seeded position ahead of Romania’s Adina Diaconu and Andreea Dragoman, the runners up in Sochi. Winner one year ago in partnership with compatriot Eline Loyen, Belgium’s Lisa Lung joins forces with Margo Degraeff; they occupy the third seeded position. The combination Natalia Bajor and Solomiya Brateyko complete the top four pairs.
Meanwhile, in the Men’s Singles event, Slovenia’s Darko Jorgic, bronze medallist in Sochi, is the second seed behind the Czech Republic’s Tomas Polansky. Austria’s Andreas Levenko and Romania’s Cristian Pletea are the next on the list followed by Hungary’s Bence Majoros and the host nation’s Aliaksandr Khanin. Rares Sipos, like Cristian Pletea from Romania and Poland’s Patryk Zatowka complete the top four names.
The eighth seed in the Men’s Singles event, in the Men’s Doubles competition, Patryk Zatowska is the top seed in harness with colleague, Marek Badowski. Darko Jorgic and Slovenian compatriot, Deni Kozul occupy the second seeded position; they are pursued by the combination of Tomas Polansky and Germany’s Denis Klein. Ibrahim Gündüz and Abdulla Yigenler occupy the fourth seeded spot.
A total of 56 men and 56 women form the entry, the December 2017 European Under 21 Men’s and Under 21 Women’s Rankings being the determining factor; a national association is limited to three male and three female players.
In each of the Men’s Singles and Women’s Singles events, the leading eight names enter the competition in stage two; the remaining 48 players compete in 12 first stage groups. Players finishing in first and second places in each group advance the stage two and where the join the top eight seeds.
Thus in stage two, there are 32 players in each event; eight groups, players finishing in first and second places, a total of 16 players, advance to stage three where play is administered on a knock-out basis.
Seeding in the Men’s Singles and Women’s Singles events is based on the Under 21 World Rankings for March; the seeding for Men’s Doubles and Women’s Doubles, the events being organised throughout on a knock-out basis, was made by the Ranking Committee of the European Table Tennis Union.