by Ian Marshall, ITTF Publications Manager
Pride of place went to Amy Wang Wang and Elena Troshneva.
Amy Wang beat the highest rated player on qualification tournament duty. She accounted for Chinese Taipei’s Huang Yu-Wen (14-12, 11-8, 3-11, 11-7, 11-8) before overcoming Denmark’s Stefanie Christensen (11-9, 11-6, 11-6, 11-7). Likewise, Elena Troshneva beat Brazil’s Gui Lin (11-3, 11-6, 11-8, 11-7), prior to securing top spot by defeating Luxembourg’s Sarah Meyer (11-4, 11-7, 11-6, 11-3).
Meanwhile, further down the order, Yumeno Soma and Ivana Malobacic did exactly the same.
Yumeno Soma beat Slovenia’s Alex Galic (11-5, 12-14, 10-12, 11-9, 8-11, 14-12, 11-8) prior to accounting for Russia’s Anastasia Kolish (11-7, 11-3, 11-5, 11-4); Ivana Malobabic overcame Russia’s Olga Kulikova (12-10, 12-10, 11-8, 5-11, 11-9) before securing first place in the courtesy of success in opposition to Japan’s Satsuki Odo (11-2, 11-8, 11-9, 11-2).
Surprises outcomes; moreover Amy Wang, Elena Troshneva, Yumeno Soma and Ivana Malobacic are the only players guaranteed a main draw place. Players who finish in first places in each of the 31 groups plus one “Lucky Loser” drawn at random from the second placed players advance to the main draw.
Notably with defeats for Huang Yi-Hua, Gui Lin and Alex Galic, the seventh highest rated player on qualification tournament duty; three of the top names must rely on the wheel of fortune if they are to progress.
Conversely the remaining leading names on qualification duty, Chinese Taipei’s Wang Yi-Ju, Wu Yue of the United States and Turkey’s Sibel Altinkaya all ended the opening day of qualification unbeaten as did the French duo of Stéphanie Loueillette and Laura Gasnier.
Play in the qualification tournament concludes on Wednesday 11th April.