06 Apr 2018

The calm before the storm, at the Lion 31st ITTF-ATTU Asian Cup Yokohama 2018 on Friday 6th April, it was the reverse; it was the calm after the storm.

China’s Fan Zhendong and Lin Gaoyuan, the top two names on duty, after suffering shock defeats ended the day on positive notes to secure second places in their respective groups and thus passports to the main draw.

by Ian Marshall, ITTF Publications Manager

Fan Zhendong, after losing to Japan’s 14 year old Tomokazu Harimoto (11-8, 8-11, 11-9, 11-8), concluded his initial itinerary with success against Kazakhstan’s Kirill Gerassimenko (11-8, 11-4, 11-8).

In a similar manner Lin Gaoyuan who had experienced defeat at the hands of Korea’s Lee Sangsu (11-8, 11-5, 11-5) accounted for Hong Kong’s Jiang Tianyi (11-5, 11-7, 11-6) to bring his first stage schedule to an end.

Good form from Tomokazu Harimoto and Lee Sangsu; that good form continued, both ended the group qualification stage unbeaten, both overcame adversaries from Chinese Taipei. Tomokazu Harimoto accounted for Chuang Chih-Yuan (10-12, 11-5, 11-6, 11-5) to secure first place; similarly, Lee Sangsu accounted for Chen Chien-An (15-17, 14-12, 11-6, 14-12).

The day unbeaten, for Hong Kong’s Wong Chun Ting, the no.3 seed; he also ended the day without a loss against his name. He overcame Iran’s Noshad Alamiyan (11-4, 11-6, 9-11, 11-6) to finish one place ahead of Japan’s Koki Niwa; playing on home soil, Koki Niwa duly completed his group phase matches with success in opposition to Korea’s Jeong Sangeun (9-11, 11-6, 11-6, 4-11, 11-8).

Respective third places finished in the hands of Chuang Chih-Yuan, Chen-An and Jeoung Sangeun. They now join Iran’s Nima Alamian in the challenge round. Competing in the regional group, Nima Alamian beat Saudi Arabia’s Abdulaziz Al-Abbad in three straight games (11-3, 11-8, 11-8) to end the day unbeaten and in first place.

He now meets Chuang Chih-Yuan in an attempt to reserve a place in the quarter-finals; Chen Chien-An faces Jang Sangeun.

The challenge round followed by quarter-finals and semi-finals will be played on Saturday 7th April.

2018 Asian Cup Fan Zhendong Tomokazu Harimoto Lin Gaoyuan Lee Sangsu

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Day 3 - LION 2018 ITTF-ATTU Asian Cup