18 May 2018

Winner of the Junior Girls’ Singles title at the recent 2018 Spanish Junior and Cadet Open in Platja d’Aro, China’s Zuo Yue underlined the fact, on the early afternoon of Friday 18th May, that she is a name to note.

The 17 year old emerged one of only three players, the others being Korea’s Kim Danbi and Kim Jimin, who had been required to compete in the qualification tournament, to succeed in the lower half of the draw in the opening round of the Women’s Singles event at the 2018 ITTF Challenge Thailand Open in Bangkok.

by Ian Marshall, ITTF Publications Manager

Impressively in four straight games Zuo Yue accounted for Singapore’s Zhang Wanling, the no.30 seed (11-9, 11-4, 11-7, 11-1) to reserve her place in the second round.

Success in style for Zuo Yue, for Kim Danbi, it was somewhat similar; she overcame the defensive skills of Alina Arlouskaya of Belarus, the no.24 seed, in four games (6-11, 11-5, 11-2, 11-6, 12-10). However, for Kim Jimin, life was somewhat different; she had to stave off a fighting recovery from Charlotte Carey of Wales, the no.15 seed, before eventually emerging successful (11-9, 11-8, 11-9, 7-11, 4-11, 5-11, 11-8).

Noteworthy performances, to the delight of the host nation, there were also efforts of note from Nanthana Komwong and Orawan Paranang. They flew the Thai flag high. Nanthana Komwong, the no.10 seed, beat Korea’s Kim Yedam (11-6, 11-6, 4-11, 11-4, 6-11, 11-5); Orawan Paranang, the no.26 seed, accounted for Chinese Taipei’s Fang Sih-Han (11-9, 13-11, 11-8, 8-11, 11-9).

Second round places secured; it was the same for the leading names on duty in the lower half of the draw, Japan being very much in evidence.

Hitomi Sato, the no.2 seed, beat Korea’s Kim Haeun (9-11, 11-6, 11-7, 11-6, 11-5), Honoka Hashimoto, the no.3 seed, accounted for Singapore’s Goi Rui Xuan (11-2, 11-4, 11-2, 11-3).

Likewise, Yui Hamamoto, the no.5 seed, ended the hopes of Kim Eunji, like Kim Haeun from Korea (11-2, 11-6, 11-9, 11-8), whilst Singapore’s Yu Mengyu, the no.7 seed, defeated Divya Deshpande (11-9, 11-8, 11-7, 11-5).

Play in the second round of the Women’s Singles event takes place later in the day.

Challenge Series 2018 Thailand Open Zuo Yue

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