by Ian Marshall, ITTF Publications Manager
Second place in his initial stage group, losing to Montenegro’s Filip Radovic (13-11, 8-11, 12-10, 11-9); in the opening round of the Junior Boys’ Singles event he accounted for Slovakia’s Stefan Peko, the no.10 seed (11-3, 11-4, 11-2, 11-6) in an event where the top 16 names gained a direct entry to the main draw.
Success for Samuel Kulczycki in the opening round; there was one further similar upset; Guillaume Alcayde of France accounted foe Spain’s Francisco Ruiz, the no. 11 seed (11-7, 11-7, 13-15, 14-12, 11-6).
Notable performances and there were four more to catch the eye. Contrary to expectations Belgium’s Davis Comeliau, the Czech Republic’s Radim Bako and Russia’s Lev Volin alongside China’s Xiang Peng had all secured first positions in their respective initial phase groups contrary to current status.
All emerged successful in the opening round. David Comeliau beat Singapore’s Andy Wong Yan Kai (11-5, 11-4, 11-6, 13-11), Xiang Peng accounted for Adrien Rassenfosse like David Comeliau from Belgium (11-7, 11-3, 11-6, 11-6), whilst Radim Bako overcame Canada’s Terence Young (10-12, 8-11, 11-7, 11-6, 13-11, 11-3). Not to be upstaged, Lev Volin ended the hopes of the Czech Republic’s Frantisek Onderka (11-6, 11-9, 11-9, 11-3).
Meanwhile, the top eight names have yet to enter the arena; however in the Junior Boys’ Doubles event, the principal pairs have been in action.
Notably the top four pairs all advanced to round three. It was a successful day for the French pairing of Lilian Bardet and Jules Rolland as it was for Polan’s Artur Grela and Jan Zandecki. Likewise China’s Yu Heyi and Yuan Licen enjoyed success as did the host nation’s Mario Cappuccio and Carlon Rossi.
Play in the Junior Boys’ Singles and Junior Boys’ Doubles events concludes on Thursday 22nd March.