by Ian Marshall, ITTF Publications Manager
Cho Eonrae and Kim Minhyeok beat India’s Raj Mondal and Sourav Saha in a contest between two pairs who had been required to start their quest for honours in the qualification tournament; the Koreans recovered from an opening game deficit to emerge successful in four games (7-11, 11-9, 11-4, 11-2).
An impressive performance from Cho Eonrae and Kim Minhyeok, it was exactly the same from An Jaehyun and Cho Seungmin; the no.8 seeds, they beat Hong Kong’s Kwan Man Ho and Li Hon Ming in three straight games (11-6, 11-8, 11-9).
The win means that for the second time in succession Cho Seungmin will appear in a Spanish Open Men’s Doubles final; last year when the tournament was staged in Almeria in November, he partnered colleague Park Ganghyeon to success. The pair beat Russia’s Andrei Baibuldin and Vitali Murzin to secure the title.
A semi-final reverse for Hong Kong, it was the same in the Women’s Doubles competition; Ng Wing Nam and Minnie Soo Wai Yam, the no.3 seeds, experienced defeat when facing Japan’s Honoka Hashimoto and Hitomi Sato, the top seeds; a straight games defeat was the order of proceedings (11-8, 11-5, 11-4).
In the final Honoka Hashimoto and Hitomi Sato face Luxembourg’s Sarah de Nutte and Ni Xialian; the no.4 seeds, they received what was in fact a walk-over against qualifiers Satsuki Odo and Saki Shibata. At the end of the first game which the Luxembourg pair won (10-6), and injury to Satsuki Odo forced the Japanese pair to concede the match.
The final of the Women’s Doubles event is scheduled for Sunday 1st April at 10.00 am (local time); it will be followed immediately by the Men’s Doubles final.